This publication provides an overview of climate risk for Pakistan. Pakistan is characterized by diverse topography, ecosystems, and climate zones. Rich in natural resources, including fertile agricultural lands, natural gas reserves, and mineral deposits, Pakistan faces challenges in balancing competing objectives between economic development and environmental protection. The Government of Pakistan established the Ministry of Climate Change and issued its Second National Communication on Climate Change in 2019. The National Climate Change Policy recognizes that while Pakistan is working on a strategy that seeks to conserve energy, improve energy efficiency and optimize fuel mix to support global efforts for reduction in greenhouse gas emissions, the more immediate and pressing task is to prepare itself for adaptation to climate change.
This publication features key messages regarding Pakistan's climate risks, including:
- Pakistan faces rates of warming considerably above the global average with a potential rise of 1.3°C–4.9°C by the 2090s over the 1986–2005 baseline.
- The frequency and intensity of extreme climate events is projected to increase, increasing disaster risk particularly for vulnerable poor and minority groups.
- Projections suggest yield declines in many key food and cash crops, including cotton, wheat, sugarcane, maize, and rice.
- All of the above should be seen in the context of high and persistent levels of undernourishment and deprivation. There is an urgent need for further research and delivery of effective adaptation and disaster risk reduction measures.