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The National Climate Change Policy of Pakistan: An Evaluation of Its Impact on Institutional Change

Abstract

Climate change is a reality. It is happening and posing adverse impacts globally as well as on Pakistan. To effectively respond to this ubiquitous threat, Pakistan formulated the National Climate Change Policy (NCCP) in 2012 and operationalized it in 2013. Yet it encourages further analyses and evaluations so as to identify any un-addressed or unidentified measures in the policy, to examine the established policy measures more in depth, and to ensure its effective implementation. This study presents a qualitative analysis of the NCCP. To undertake the analysis in a recognized and systematic fashion, the policy document is evaluated against a criterion set by Cheung et al. (Aust Health Rev 34:405–413, 2010). The main characteristics of this criterion include accessibility, policy background, policy goals, resources, monitoring and evaluation, public opportunities, and obligations. This study contributes to the literature to understand the critical aspects of a climate policy from a developing and one of the most affected countries due to climate change. The study is important to explore the strengths and shortcomings of the policy. Additionally, our study contributes by setting a framework of novel insights by utilizing a new criterion for analyzing a climate policy. The analysis provides valuable inputs to the subnational governments in Pakistan which are actually responsible for implementation of climate and other related policies. Our evaluation found that NCCP offers some strengths but the document has certain weaknesses too. The policy is a promising document which provides directions and guidelines to the subnational governments for establishing their policies and effective actions plans. It provides a proper mechanism of monitoring the implementation activities in the country. Moreover, it covers important sectors and emphasizes on integration of sectoral policies with climate change policy. The policy presents a reasonable mechanism to enhance the human and institutional capacity. However, it lacks realistic and comprehensive backing for established goals and objectives. For instance, it proposes some measures which are not practically actionable. One of such measures suggests to protecting the glaciers which is not possible keeping in view the existing military conflict between Pakistan and India in the region. This shows that the policy lacks to base on empirical research. The findings of the study will be very helpful for policy makers and climate experts while revising or revisiting the policy document. This analysis provides valuable lessons to provincial governments in Pakistan while framing their provincial climate change policies and action plans. The study opens new research areas and avenues for further evaluations and analysis for the NCCP and upcoming provincial climate change policies in Pakistan.

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Correspondence to Muhammad Mumtaz.

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Mumtaz, M. The National Climate Change Policy of Pakistan: An Evaluation of Its Impact on Institutional Change. Earth Syst Environ 2, 525–535 (2018). https://doi.org/10.1007/s41748-018-0062-x

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Keywords

  • Policy
  • Climate change
  • Analysis
  • Pakistan