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Can South Asia make a common plan to tackle climate change?

Columns 2022-09-23, 11:48pm


Jehangir Hussain

Jehangir Hussain

The weather variations across South Asia during last summer, marked by unbearable heat, devastating floods in Pakistan  speak of an unmistakable impact of climate change.

The annual rainfall steadily declined in some the regions of South Asia.

Several countries in the region are also facing the impact of rising sea level.

South Asia would experience loss of its land surface and internal migration due to sea level rise, predicted the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).

The region suffered loss of lives and economic damage due to the weather variations caused by global warming.

Fires destroyed community forests in Nepal in 2016.

Landslides claim many Nepalese lives each year.

 Climate induced faced by South Asian countries, require the policymakers to undertake adaptation and mitigation measures.

Adaptation measures in the region need to be scaled up to strengthen resilience and reduce vulnerability to climate change, as stipulated in the Paris Agreement on Global Goal on Adaptation (CGA).

South Asian countries need to increase investment in renewable energy to make agriculture, manufacturing, construction and transport sector greener.

South Asian countries need to fulfill the commitments they had made at the 26th annual climate summit (COP26) held in 2021 to reduce carbon emissions in the coming decades.

 Bangladesh committed to reduce its green house gas (GHG) emissions by 6.73 per cent by 2030 in the sector of power, transport, industry, waste and land use.

As implementation and adaptation measures require significant investments, South Asian countries  should consider going for trans-boundary collaboration for action on mitigation and adaptation by setting aside funds to address the adverse impacts of climate change on the lives and livelihood of people.

The fund should spent for emission reduction, halting economic loss in the aftermaths of disasters induced by climate change.

Since climate change impacts across borders, the solutions need to be found through cross border cooperation among the South Asian countries with possible support from developed economies.