Pakistan on brink of another wave of floods, more dead as toll tops 1,500


New Delhi: Pakistan is at risk of more flooding and deaths after extremely heavy torrential rains fueled by climate change inundated a third of the nation and left more than 1,500 dead.

Authorities are concerned that heavy rains in parts of neighboring India will flood major rivers in Pakistan, although waters have begun to recede in some areas. To prevent further loss of life and property, the Provincial Disaster Management Authority has advised residents of specific regions of Pakistan to be evacuated.

According to data released on Saturday on the website of the Pakistan Meteorological Department, the rivers have not yet seen a rise in water level.

The climate disaster in the South Asian country has cost $30 billion in damages and displaced 33 million people, which is more than the entire population of Australia. The country is already struggling with low foreign exchange reserves and the highest inflation in decades. After assistance from the International Monetary Fund, the nation recently avoided a default. While the rupee is near an all-time low, bonds have hit their lowest level since mid-July.

According to Abdul Kadir Hussain, head of fixed income asset management at Dubai-based Arqaam Capital Ltd., “the economic impact of the floods is a major cause of concern for global investors.” He also said that the promised dollar inflows that were supposed to follow the IMF financing have not materialized. Hussain further noted that the nation’s political unrest has not abated.

The political climate remains tense at a time when the nation is working hard to help millions of flood victims. Imran Khan, a former prime minister, said the government was delaying the election until a new army chief was appointed, and as a result the army issued a rare public reprimand to him. Khan, who was ousted in April and is advocating early elections, is also dealing with a series of legal issues that could lead to unrest in the streets.

A woman in Pakistan’s Sindh province holds a pot full of drinking water on Saturday, Sept. 10, 2022. Flooding caused by heavy rains has wreaked havoc, inundating a third of Pakistan, forcing more than 500,000 people to flee their homes and destroying commercial crops and communication infrastructure.

Catastrophe continues to dominate. Peak rainfall in Pakistan’s Baluchistan and Sindh regions was 75% more severe due to climate change than it would have been in a world without warming, according to scientists. According to World Weather Attribution, a scientific organization that researches the connection between extreme weather events and climate change, the flooding was made worse by a heat wave earlier this year in Pakistan and India that was also caused by climate change.

Monsoon rains are expected in parts of Gujarat, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh and Jammu and Kashmir till Tuesday, according to the India Meteorological Office. However, Pakistan’s overall position is improving. According to Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif’s office, some districts should be flood-free in two to three weeks, but in other areas it could take up to three months.

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