The Ministry of Climate Change (MoCC) has launched the process of preparing the country’s first-ever National Adaptation Plan in a record time of six months that was facing a halt during the previous regime.
After already being appointed as the Federal Minister for Climate Change in April 2022, Senator Sherry Rehman ordered the Ministry’s Official to call a meeting of the Climate Change Council, which had not been held since it was established by the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government, and to ensure the continuation of projects that were crucial to the nation’s resilience and preparedness for the impacts of climate change and natural disasters.
After taking over as Federal Minister for Climate Change in April 2022, Senator Sherry Rehman directed the Ministry’s professionals to call the Climate Change Council’s first meeting in 100 days, which had been due ever since it was established by the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government. She also instructed them to continue the projects that were crucial to the nation’s resilience and preparedness for the effects of climate change and natural disasters.
The Minister directed the Ministry’s officials to ensure a disaster and climate-change resilient policy that endeavors to guide the federating for improving adaptation on a priority basis.
According to Senator Sherry Rehman, the Federal Minister for Climate Change, the country is the world’s least significant source of carbon emissions. Being the state most severely affected by climate disasters, it was not its responsibility to focus on mitigation; rather, it was required to ensure adaptation to global warming and environmental degradation for a sustainable future.
The process started to prepare the National Adaptation Plan for building resilience to climate change aimed to reduce vulnerabilities to climatic changes by creating comprehensive medium and long-term plans including the integration of adaptation measures into national policy. “Pakistan has been using nature-based solutions and ecosystem-based adaptation in its national efforts to build climate resilience,” the Minister said.
Additionally, a framework for a climate-resilient urban policy was being developed to identify potential barriers to achieving sustainable and resilient urban development.
The Ministry under the collective vision of the coalition government initiated the biggest initiative of the Living Indus after consultations with the provinces in order to protect the Indus River from environmental degradation.
The World Bank report stated that the River Indus was under existential threat from environmental deterioration, human incursion, and anthropogenic activities, making it unlikely that the water source supporting the thousands of years-old human civilizations would endure another fifty years.
The Ministry while considering the rising threats and shrinking water levels in the Indus River, worked on the ambitious initiative of protecting, cleaning, and reviving the only lifeline of the country.
The Ministry also collaborated together to pilot the first Local Adaptation Plan ever created for the districts of Thatta and Chaman in Sindh and Balochistan, respectively. To ensure that the region affected by climate change could adopt, the document was based on local knowledge and the expert advice of international professionals.
The MoCC in a unique move, lead global negotiations as Pakistan chaired the G-77 plus China group engagements at COP-27 and successfully got the long-standing initiative of loss and damage fund approved which was hailed by the world community as a much needed step led by the most impacted and vulnerable nations due to climate change.