Nasrullah Aleem Hunzai
Presently there is a great debate everywhere among many people, in news papers and sometimes on news channels, on the topic of “global warming”. What is the term “global warming”? Gradual increase in the temperature of the world due to increase in carbon dioxide (CO2) of Earth atmosphere, that results a change which is believed to be permanently changing the climate of the Earth. So the gradual increase in the temperature of the Earth’s atmosphere is termed as “Global Warming”. Now the question is that why temperature of the earth is gradually increasing? What are the reasons behind global warming? Today, the overwhelming consensus of researchers is that global warming is real and is caused by human activity, primarily the burning of fossil fuels that pump carbon dioxide (CO2), methane and other greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. The average temperature of Earth according to NASA is 15 °C. Without greenhouse gases, the average temperature of Earth’s surface would be about −18 °C rather than present average of 15 °C . Thus we human being are responsible for all these gases to pump into the atmosphere which ultimately increase the temperature of the earth. We should think about our core responsibilities before celebrating the Earth day.
To control the continuous increase in temperature of the Earth is challenging for the scientists. In past many scientists of the world have tried to find out a solution to control on global warming. Every year scientists of the world join their heads to think and overcome on this challenging issue but there is no fruitful outcome till date. The main reason is that, the powerful countries are not ready to reduce their industries and activities which are cause of air pollution. Unlimited use of natural resources in industrial revelation, cause the environmental pollution which impact on human life. Materialistic approach of capitalism destroys the system of human life. Today, the world is in competition of atomic weapons. Wars are also cause of global warming by atomic pollution. If failed to control on this global issue then the results may be more destructive than the world wars.
According to figure records, temperature of the Earth is increasing in various countries around the world including Pakistan. Although, impacts of extreme climatic changes will affect the whole world but it is understood that the coastal and mountainous areas will be more vulnerable to random ice melting and catastrophic flood downstream. Many impacts of climate change have already been observed, including glacier retreat, melting of ice, rising sea levels, warming lakes, changes in the timing of seasonal events and changes in agricultural productivity. In the long run, these climate changes and their results may inversely impact on forests, agricultural productivity, trees and plants. The mountain area agriculture is relatively unstable and low productive, as in recent few years it is noticed by the farmers that the flow of water in the area decrease and not flow timely during irrigation.
According to studies and research, continuous increase in winter maximum temperature can affect the quantity and flow of water in river Indus and its tributaries, consequently imposing a serious threat to agriculture related industries and power generation in both, the upper stream and downstream areas. Increased random melting of the masses can immediately cause floods in rivers and Nullahs but in the long run it may result into acute shrinkage of water causing droughts, if the snow reservoirs exhaust rapidly.
To control on global warming is global responsibility, but as our county is concerned, federal and provincial government and all other organizations need to take some serious collective steps toward coping with challenges of climate change and environment, and it is also an individual responsibility to play our part like using energy savors, drive less, control on wasting material, recycle unwanted paper and bottles, turn off lights and electronic devices when not required, planting trees, actually celebrate Earth Day, spread awareness etc, so that the power of the Gilgit-Baltistan Mountains can be hoarded from the potential threats of climate change induced natural hazards.
The contributor has MS/M.Phil degree in Management Sciences. He works for OGDCL.