LAHORE – Pakistan ranks seventh on the list currently in terms of countries vulnerable to climate change, a leading researcher has said.

“This is an alarming fact and needs to be taken seriously,” said Sundas Syeda, who was moderating a workshop on climate change organised by Individualland Pakistan (IL) in Lahore on Thursday.

IL-Pakistan is a research based consultancy and advocacy group.

The workshop was attended by journalists, students and members of civil society organisations aimed at sensitising them on the issue of climate change and need for strategies to counter the threat by both the State and the citizens.

Syeda shared data related to climate change in Pakistan including the increase in temperatures, decrease in rainfalls with the help of info-graphics developed by IL based on extensive research.

According to data, in August 2016, Balochistan only recorded a rainfall of 2.4 mm as compared to normal range which stands at an average of 23.8 mm.

She also shared findings of an analysis of political parties manifestoes conducted by IL focused on climate change. In 2016, IL conducted in-depth analysis of major political parties in Pakistan in an attempt to identify the focus of these parties on the issue of climate change.

With the help of primary, secondary and tertiary words the analysis tries to highlight the priorities of our national and provincial level political parties regarding climate change. As per the analysis, Pakistan People’s Party Parliamentarians (PPPP) has stressed on the issue compared to other parties mentioning the word “climate change” 9 times in their manifesto.

“I didn’t realise the seriousness of this issue before attending this workshop. We all need to play our respective roles in not only sensitising our peers on the issue but also to counter the issue of climate change, ” said one of the participants of the workshop at the end. Participants were also shown a documentary on climate change to further sensitise participants on the issue.

The participants lauded the efforts of Individualland Pakistan in organising this event and suggested that more events need to be organised in the future as well.