UN chief pleads for 'massive' help in flood-hit Pakistan
Guterres stresses that the world owes impoverished Pakistan "massive" assistance in recovering from the summer's devastating floods since the country bears infinitely less blame for the climate crisis than many others.
The UN Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres, has stated that the world owes impoverished Pakistan "massive" assistance in recovering from the summer's devastating floods since the country bears infinitely less blame for the climate crisis than many others.
Months of heavy monsoon rains and flooding have killed 1,391 people, affected 33 million people, and made half a million homeless. Guterres believes that there is more to be done to assist a country that contributes less than 1% of global emissions.
“We are heading into a disaster,” Guterres said.
“We have waged war on nature and nature is tracking back and striking back in a devastating way. Today in Pakistan, tomorrow in any of your countries,” he added.
The UN chief's visit comes less than two weeks after he requested $160 million in emergency funding to assist those affected by the flood.
Shortly after arriving in Pakistan, Guterres said, “I appeal for massive support from the international community as Pakistan responds to this climate catastrophe”.
“Pakistan has not contributed in a meaningful way to climate change, the level of emissions in this country is relatively low,” he said.
“But Pakistan is one of the most dramatically impacted countries by climate change.”
“Even today, emissions are rising as people die in floods and famines. This is insanity. This is collective suicide,” he said. “From Pakistan, I am issuing a global appeal: Stop the madness; end the war with nature; invest in renewable energy now.”
According to Guterres, Pakistan needs around $30 billion to recover from the floods.
Global warming was leading the glaciers in mountainous northern regions to melt faster than usual, aggravating the impact of heavy rain, according to Pakistan senator and federal minister for climate change, Sherry Rehman.
7,532 is the number of glaciers Pakistan has, a number that is bigger than anywhere outside the polar regions. This causes Pakistan to be one of the countries most exposed to climate change-related weather extremes.