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Climate pressures mount in the Global South

In this week’s Net Hero Podcast, we spoke to Mahin Khan, former employee at Energy Live News, a Pakistani national and an entrepreneur who’s trying to raise climate awareness in her country.

Developing countries are disproportionately affected by the climate crisis.

Last year, Pakistan endured devastating floods, claiming 1,700 lives and displacing more than 100,000. This year, scorching heat and relentless monsoons brought further hardship.

Ms Khan said: ‘During the months of October to December, we have smog and have the 3rd worst air quality in the world. In the summer, we are faced with floods. We don’t have the proper humanitarian response to this or the right facilities for mitigation.

Pakistan contributes less than 1% towards the global emissions but it is the 8th most vulnerable country.’

She added: ‘Climate change is being overshadowed in countries like Pakistan because it is a developing nation that has so many other issues such as political instability and an economic crisis.

‘But all of these issues are interlinked, the floods and heatwaves are killing so many people which adds to the political crisis and the economic crisis.’

Ms Khan noted that climate education and holding people accountable are necessary to combat climate change.

Without a proper understanding of concepts such as net zero and sustainability, its unlikely that the populations of countries such as Pakistan will make the changes necessary.

Attitudes, however, are changing albeit slowly. Mahin said: ‘Some people are talking about sustainability. I’ve seen a few start-up who are talking about climate change.’

She added: ‘We do have hybrids but we still have a lot of petrol cars on the roads and […] we do have some electric buses but they are not being regulated properly and we still have a really long way to go.’

Ms Khan notes that the pace of change needs to accelerate to make any meaningful difference to Pakistan’s situation.

She added: ‘On a root level, not much has been done except for the Ten Billion Tree Tsunami Project that Pakistan did because that did a lot of offsetting for us but apart from that, we need regulatory bodies and a framework.’

Ms Khan’s start-up, Carbonwise, will collaborate with big businesses, government agencies and municipalities to educate the masses on the issues of climate change.

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Energy Live News
Energy Live News
This article first appeared on Energy Live News, an award winning news service. Their mission is to give you balanced news, analysis, commentary of energy from their dedicated team of quality journalists and production staff.
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