‘Govt committed to protect country from desertification risk’

Coordinator to the Prime Minister on Climate Change Romina Khurshid Alam has highlighted Pakistan’s urgent need to tackle desertification and land degradation.

In a statement issued on the eve of World Day to Combat Desertification and Drought, she said Pakistan is experiencing severe desertification and recurrent droughts, with 68 percent of its land classified as arid or semi-arid.

Romina Khurshid Alam emphasized the government’s commitment to restoring degraded lands, enhancing climate resilience, and achieving sustainable development goals.

She noted that Pakistan, a signatory to the UN Convention to Combat Desertification, is collaborating with international partners on various projects to address these challenges.

Factors contributing to desertification in Pakistan include rising temperatures, erratic rainfall, deforestation, unsustainable agricultural practices, and carbon emissions. The resulting impacts include loss of fertile soil, water scarcity, rural poverty, and increased migration.

She said the present government under the leadership of Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif has already taken proactive coping measures to address desertification in collaboration with various stakeholders including civil society organizations, academia, and international partners.

The Prime Minister’s Coordinator underscored ongoing initiatives like the Green Pakistan Programme, climate-smart agriculture, and Recharge Pakistan. These efforts aim to promote sustainable land management, increase tree cover, and conserve natural resources. Community engagement and raising awareness are crucial components of these initiatives.

She called for a holistic approach involving environmental, economic, and social strategies to address desertification and protect livelihoods, urging global cooperation to combat this growing threat.

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