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Pakistan at Global Warming of 1.5°C – 2 °C: Capturing Opportunities and Managing Challenges

Why Global Warming of 1.5-2°C matters for Pakistan? Even at 1°C of global warming Pakistan has been exposed to a multitude of climate change impacts. Increase in frequency and intensity of extreme weather events, surging stress on water resources, recessing cryosphere and glaciers, swelling health risks, rising climate change induced migration and often irreversible impacts on land and water ecosystems.

These impacts will exacerbate at global warming of 1.5°C, with even worse consequences at 2°C, reveals the IPCC Special Report, and we are not on track for either. Global warming at 2°C will expose about 37% of world population to severe heat waves (at least once every five years), 411 million more urban population to severe drought and 32 to 80 million people to flooding from sea level rise in 2100. If the world strives to limit global warming to 1.5°C, according to scientists at IPCC, we can reduce severe heat wave casualties to 14%, rise in drought affected population to 350 million and flood victims to 31 to 69 million compared to 2°C levels. Thus, half a degree of global warming could expose tens of millions more people worldwide to life-threatening heat waves, water shortages and coastal flooding.

Why must Pakistan worry about the global temperature increases? Global warming of 1.5°C and more so of 2°C will not only exacerbate climate change impacts but have direct implications on Pakistan’s economy, food security, water supply, livelihoods, social well-being and ecosystem health. The need to undertake planning on how to cope with surging risks associated with climate change is more necessary than ever.

Vulnerable populations including women and migrants and local communities dependent on agricultural or coastal livelihoods are at a disproportionately higher risk of adverse consequences. Effects on human health are expected to increase, including negative consequences for heat related morbidity and mortality and increasing risks from vector borne diseases. Expected reductions in crop yields, particularly in maze, rice, wheat, and potentially other cereal crops will harm food security. Biodiversity and ecosystems will suffer long-lasting and irreversible changes, including species loss and extinction, more so at higher temperature increases. IPCC predicts that globally 18% of insects, 16% of plants, 8% of vertebrates will lose more than half of their range at global warming levels of 2°C.
Far-reaching transitions in energy, land, urban and infrastructure and industrial systems will be required. Renewables are projected to supply 48-60% of electricity by 2030 and 63–81% by 2050 if warming is limited to 1.5°C. IPCC predicts steep reductions in the use of coal for electricity, close to 0% to limit global warming levels. Similarly, to limit warming 1.5°C, CO2 emissions from industry are projected to be 75–90% lower in 2050 from 2010 levels.

Limiting warming to 1.5C is barely feasible and every year we delay the window of feasibility halves. Adaption will be expensive, but the window of opportunity is not yet closed. For ecosystems, food and health systems adaptation will be more challenging at 2°C of global warming than for 1.5°C. Adaptation options specific to national contexts if carefully selected together with enabling conditions, will have benefits for sustainable development and poverty reduction. However, if poorly designed or implemented, adaptation projects can result in trade-offs or maladaptation with adverse impacts for sustainable development. Pathways for adaptation to climate change have robust synergies particularly with health (SDG 3), clean energy (SDG 7), cities and communities (SDG 11), responsible consumption and production (SDG 12) and oceans (SDG 14). Some pathways have potential tradeoffs with mitigation for poverty (SDG 1), hunger (SDG 2), water (SDG 6) and energy access (SDG 7).   

Pakistan must look to domestic and global channels to garner support for strengthening their preparedness and response to these global changes that will have local impacts. Transitions in systems can be enabled by an increase of adaptation and mitigation investments, policy instruments, the acceleration of technological innovation and behavior changes. Strengthening the capacities for climate action of national and sub-national authorities, civil society, the private sector, and local communities can support the implementation of actions implied by limiting global warming to 1.5°C. International cooperation can provide an enabling environment for this to be achieved in the context of sustainable development.

Event Report

Pakistan Policy Dialogue


Pakistan at Global Warming 1.5-2.0: Capturing Opportunities and Managing Challenges by Ali Tauqeer Sheikh
Climate Change Impact on Water Availability in Pakistan by Dr. Muhammad Zia ur Rahman Hashmi
The Hindu Kush Himalaya Assessment by Dr. Ghulam Rasul
Global Warming of 1.5°C by Panmao Zhai

Speaker's Profile

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Video Interviews

Promises made at COP21 still await the actions: Marc Baréty, Ambassador of France to Pakistan
Climate Change can wallop Pakistan's economy, water resources: Margaret Adamson, Australian High Commissioner to Pakistan
Poland & Pakistan are sharing same position on Climate Change, Piotr Opalinski, Ambassador of Republic of Poland in Pakistan
Serious measures required for food security of Pakistan, Dr Yusuf Zafar, Chairman Pakistan Agricultural Research Institute
Climate Change has no boundaries, Mushahid Hussain, Senator and a Member of Senate Climate Change Committee

Click here to view the Pictures of the event.

Follow the link to view the IPCC Report https://www.ipcc.ch/sr15/



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Other Details

Start Date:11/30/2018
End Date:11/30/2018
Last Date for Registration:11/29/2018