United NationsDepartment of Economic and Social Affairs Sustainable Development


Intervention by Mr. Iftikhar Arain of Pakistan
14th Session of Commission on Sustainable Development (CSD14)
Addressing inter linkages between climate change and sustainable
(May 04, 2006) PM session
Mr. Chairman,
Let me thank the panelists for their very informative briefing.
The changing weather and climate has negative impact on our water
availability, food security, human health and well being. Pakistan is
signatory to a number of Multilateral Environmental Agreements (MEA).
There exists tremendous scope in Pakistan for the transfer of suitable
technical and technological expertise in the areas of climate change and
impact assessment, evaluation of GHG emissions, assessment of mitigation
options, and adaptation of host of relevant mitigating technologies. Such a
transfer has been limited to very few applications, but given the size of the
country and its development forecast, the possibilities of a much larger
assimilation of technical know-how with widespread replication potential is
2. Pakistan has undertaken following initiatives in the area of climate
· We adopted Kyoto Protocol in 1997 and acceded to it in 11th January
· We have submitted the Initial National Communication to UNFCCC
in which national GHG inventory was updated and strategy for
addressing climate change concerns developed.
· We have carried out a comprehensive study for assessing the impact
of climate change in Pakistan through UNEP and our Ministry of
· An autonomous Global Change Impact Studies Center has been
established that is engaged in research h on impacts and adaptation to
climate change in the country. The Center is now well equipped with
the staff and resources and is engaged in modeling base research on
climate change not only in Pakistan but also at the regional level.
3. Pakistan has been trying to overcome the following challenges faced
in the area of climate change:
· Pakistan?s economy is dependent on agricultural production.
Agriculture accounts for 24% of our GDP and employs more than
40% of our labour force. It is highly vulnerable to the stress caused by
the changing weather and climate.
· We lack appropriate action plans, awareness and education to fully
implement our commitments of Multilateral Environmental
· We also lack global change early warning and monitoring system.
· We lack research and mitigation plan to combat climate change. Deglaciation
of northern Pakistan will have serious consequences for
water availability in Indus basin.
· We need to enhance capacity building of relevant institutions.
· We need to establish disaster risk management centers In order to
achieve the goal of reducing GHG emissions;
· Above all, we need to bring significant additional resources to
environment sector.
4. We note with concern that natural disasters adversely impact
development and undermine achievement of the Millennium Development
Goals. The fact that in 2005, some 409 disasters killed nearly 90,000 people
out of them, more than 90 per cent of the deaths occurred in developing
countries and affected over 133 million and caused economic losses of
$155.6 billion, is a stark reminder of the seriousness of the situation. In the
last decade, Asia accounted for almost 70 per cent of all lives lost.