The Stream

How is extreme weather changing Pakistan?

On Tuesday, September 6 at 19:30 GMT:
Unprecedented flooding in Pakistan has left millions of people in ruin, with the country’s central government and provincial authorities scrambling to provide urgent help to those who need it.

An estimated 33 million people have been affected by weeks of flash flooding throughout the monsoon season. The southern provinces of Sindh, Balochistan, and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa have been particularly badly hit, leaving a third of Pakistan underwater. More than 1,300 people have been killed.

Weather forecasters say even more rain may soon be on the way. And the central government and provincial authorities are now warning of a protracted humanitarian crisis. Thousands of families have been left homeless, with only a fraction of affected people reaching relief camps to access essential aid. Aid agencies are struggling to deliver food and medical aid to people beyond roads and bridges that have been destroyed by the weight of water.

Pakistan’s prime minister Shehbaz Sharif has called the deluge a “climate catastrophe”, while climate change minister Sherry Rehman says the country is being disproportionately affected by extreme weather events that are being driven by rich nations’ carbon emissions. Climate scientists and activists say that Pakistan may be entering a new normal defined by devastating cycles of flood and drought.

In this episode of The Stream, we’ll look at how people affected by Pakistan’s floods are faring, and examine how extreme weather events are posing an environmental challenge without parallel in the country’s history.

In this episode of The Stream, we are joined by:
Zein Basravi, @virtualzein
Al Jazeera correspondent

Salman Sufi, @salmansufi7
Head of Strategic Reforms, Office of the Prime Minister

Ayisha Siddiqa, @Ayisha12
Environmentalist and human rights advocate