Have you ever noticed that Pakistan's climate is changing, winters are getting shorter and summers are getting hotter? The changes we are seeing in Pakistan's climatic conditions are clear evidence of the beast (climate change) that everyone has been talking about for the last decade. The heartbreaking news is that Pakistan will be the biggest victim of this animal.

The Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a South Asian country and has the 6th largest population in the world. According to the Greenwich Climate Change Index, Pakistan is among the 10 weakest countries in terms of climate change, although Pakistan has the lowest share of greenhouse gases in the world at less than 1%. However, despite its low share of greenhouse gases, Pakistan still faces climatic disasters such as floods, changes in rainfall patterns and heat waves. These climate changes have not only damaged Pakistan's agricultural sector but also put a burden of billions of rupees on its economy. However, the future scenario of Pakistan's climate situation is also not good as according to the Asian Bank's development report, by 2080, the temperature in Pakistan will rise to 4.38 degrees, which is higher than the expected world temperature. According to this report, the summer season is getting longer with the rate of 11 days in every decade. As we are all already seeing, the winter season in Pakistan is getting shorter and summer season is getting longer with each passing year.

Taken as a whole, the range of published evidence indicates that the net damage costs of climate change are likely to be significant and to increase over time” - Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change

This is a worrying situation for an agricultural country like Pakistan as it will not only affect the country's major crops. In fact, the per capita availability of fresh water will also decrease. According to the report, by 2050, under the IPCC's A2 scenario, wheat crop production in Pakistan will decline by 11.0%. According to the report, the biggest effects of climate change on the energy sector are predicted to be due to changes in rainfall patterns, rising temperatures and extreme weather events. This increase in high temperature also increases the rate of evaporation which increases the power requirement of pump water for agricultural irrigation. If this high temperature water is used to cool nuclear and thermal power plants, it will affect the efficiency of power plants. Moreover, these changing environmental conditions will also prolong the life cycle and abundance of many diseases causing insects/parasites like dengue/malaria mosquitoes.

Collective and serious action is needed to tackle climate change, especially at the government level. Currently, the Khan government has launched the Billion Tree Tsunami Project to mitigate the effects of climate change, which is a good action to move forward and Pakistan is already reaping the benefits of the project. Nevertheless, the government should also focus on climate-driven investments, business and expertise, and eco-friendly vehicles such as electric cars.

In short, Pakistan needs a strong policy and strict legislation or political action to combat climate change, otherwise, this beast will put the country in the disasters situation.

About the Author: Muhammad Arslan Aslam is doing his masters from Asian Institute Of Technology Thailand in "Climate Change and Sustainable Development".