In our exclusive interview with Hania Imran, the visionary behind “Youth Climate Activists Pakistan,” we delve into Pakistan’s distinctive standing as one of the world’s most vulnerable nations to the climate crisis, and deliberate the critical actions required to address this pressing issue.
Wajeeha Amin explores the undeniable link between militarism and climate change. She asserts that military operations have substantial environmental impacts, including energy consumption, hazardous waste production, and habitat destruction. Nuclear weapons themselves pose devastating threats to the environment, from immediate devastation to long-term radioactive fallout. Hence, balancing defense budgets with climate solutions, and disarmament are essential to reducing climate change’s impacts.
The sovereignty of states cannot be studied in isolation from the environment in which they reside. Changes in climate patterns have a profound impact on human behavior and pose new challenges for the state. As rising sea levels, droughts, erratic rainfall, and food insecurity sweep across regions due to climate change, large populations have begun abandoning their homelands in search of security and better living standards. Athar Ali discusses how climate-driven mass migrations have influenced the sovereignty of states, disrupting socio-economic and political development.
The Arctic region is witnessing a surge in geostrategic competition. It has attracted the attention of several key players, each with their own interests and motivations. Russia, for example, sees the Arctic as a strategic area for resource extraction and military dominance. Meanwhile, the United States is concerned about maintaining its influence in the region in the midst of China’s increasing economic and strategic involvement. The competing interests of these nations are shaping the geostrategic competition in the Arctic and have the potential to impact global dynamics.
The KP government’s Pakhtunkhwa Energy Development Organization (PEDO) has been producing clean energy for three decades now. In view of that, the organization could bring in 60 million USD annually if it were to market its carbon credits through the World Bank.
Despite conferences such as the COP and Davos meetings being held annually, world temperatures are only seen to be soaring, and their impact is drastically witnessed by people all across the globe. This then begs the question, “What can be done to improve efforts in mitigating major climate-related calamities?” In this piece, Myra Imran Rafiq provides several circular and sustainable recommendations for tackling climate change.
Seemal Nadeem examines the climate change policies of Pakistan (2012 and 2021) to identify how terms like ‘sustainable’, ‘mitigation’, and ‘adaptation’ have been used. She also explains how these terms became a part of the development theory, and the implications these terms have for Pakistan and its policies.
Despite being the 4th largest producer of cotton in Asia, Pakistan ranks 8th in the continent when it comes to its textile exports. Although Pakistan’s textile exports have increased in the last year, its textile industry has not been functioning up to its true potential. Noticing this, Muhammad Bilal Farooq identifies the multiple factors that have fettered the growth of Pakistan’s textile exports over the years. He suggests that Pakistan’s government and private sector take immediate actions to address these impediments.
In their attempts to undermine their opponents, Pakistan’s political elite have polarized the citizens of the state. Hamra Tariq notes that this political polarization has prevented the state of Pakistan from reaching an agreement on matters of national security. She takes the case of the 2022 floodings in Pakistan to demonstrate the impact of this divide on the effective management of the crisis, and on the formulation of a climate policy.
In light of the recent import ban on Russia, European countries are facing a severe energy crisis. As the fuel hike persists, it is becoming increasingly impossible to maintain efficiency while being environmentally conscious. Due to this, many countries have reverted back to extracting the primary source of their energy from coal. While Abrish Nayyar highlights the need to revert to fossil fuels, she also discusses the environmental devastation that such usage will cause.
China’s recent blistering experience with heatwaves has made it difficult for the country to resolve the energy crisis. The demand for power has escalated to unprecedented heights mainly due to the unrelenting heatwaves. Alina Minhas and Amna Asif believe that this heatwave may negatively impact crop yields and hydroelectricity generation, thus damaging the country’s GDP.
When it comes to climate change, the contribution of giant corporations to global warming is often overlooked. Maryam Ibrahim notes that one of the main causes of global warming is the emission of CO2 from the burning of fossil fuels, and this is where energy corporations come in. The author takes the example of Berkshire Hathaway and Saudi Aramco to shed light on climate denial, and the lack of accountability associated with these corporations’ environmental activities.
Having experienced severe political and climatic storms this year, Sarmad Ishfaq laments the difficult times ahead for Pakistan. These devastating floods are putting the economy under even more pressure. There is a strong possibility that food costs and unemployment will now surge to record highs.
The destruction caused by heavy rainfalls and floods in Pakistan is reaching new heights as the days pass. The deadly floods have taken the lives of more than 1,300 people and impacted millions of Pakistanis. With lives at stake, extensive rescue operations are underway all over Pakistan.
Hafiz Bilal Waseem Satti links the flooding in Balochistan to the national security of Pakistan, calling it a “threat multiplier.” He argues that the floods in the province, on top of the political and economic turmoil, have aggravated the grievances held by the Baloch community. He asserts that the government has done nothing to improve Balochistan’s condition and that the floods will impact the country’s economy.
Muhammad Azam Khan draws attention to the climatic catastrophe in Pakistan and India. While the two states are divided by borders, they’re united by the similar impact of the changing climate on their territories and populations. The rise in global temperatures has led the two neighbors to experience severe droughts, floods, heatwaves, and water shortages.