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A comprehensive review of climate change impacts, adaptation, and mitigation on environmental and natural calamities in Pakistan

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Abstract

The devastations and damages caused by climate change are apparent across the globe, specifically in the South Asian region where vulnerabilities to climate change among residents are high and climate change adaptation and mitigation awareness are extremely low. Pakistan’s low adaptive capacity due to high poverty rate, limited financial resources and shortage of physical resources, and continual extreme climatic events including varying temperature, continual flooding, melting glaciers, saturation of lakes, earthquakes, hurricanes, storms, avalanches, droughts, scarcity of water, pest diseases, human healthcare issues, and seasonal and lifestyle changes have persistently threatened the ecosystem, biodiversity, human communities, animal habitations, forests, lands, and oceans with a potential to cause further damages in the future. The likely effect of climate change on common residents of Pakistan with comparison to the world and their per capita impact of climate change are terribly high with local animal species such as lions, vultures, dolphins, and tortoise facing extinction regardless of generating and contributing diminutively to global GHG emissions. The findings of the review suggested that GHG emissions cause climate change which has impacted agriculture livestock and forestry, weather trends and patterns, food water and energy security, and society of Pakistan. This review is a sectorial evaluation of climate change mitigation and adaption approaches in Pakistan in the aforementioned sectors and its economic costs which were identified to be between 7 to 14 billion USD per annum. The research suggested that governmental interference is essential for sustainable development of the country through strict accountability of resources and regulation implemented in the past for generating state-of-the-art climate policy.

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Acknowledgements

The authors greatly acknowledged the Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities (WK2080000103) and China Postdoctoral Science Foundation (2018M632552) for financial support for this study. The Chinese Academy of Science (CAS) is also greatly acknowledged for providing the CAS-Young Scientist Award (2018FYB0002). We also greatly appreciate the efforts of Dr. Habib Ullah for the planning and designing of the questionnaire, Dr. Muhammad Ubaid Ali for providing crucial assistance in developing strategies with real-world implications, and Dr. Qumber Abbas and Ms. Ayesha Imtiaz Cheema for contributions in forming the literature review.

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Correspondence to Balal Yousaf.

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Hussain, M., Butt, A.R., Uzma, F. et al. A comprehensive review of climate change impacts, adaptation, and mitigation on environmental and natural calamities in Pakistan. Environ Monit Assess 192, 48 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10661-019-7956-4

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Keywords

  • Climate change
  • Mitigation
  • Adaptation
  • Sectorial effects
  • GHG emissions