Pakistan flood damage estimated at $40 billion: ex-finance minister climate crisis news

Pakistan estimates that total damage from the recent floods could be as high as $40 billion, $10 billion more than the government’s initial estimate.

The revised figures were first shared on Al Jazeera’s special “The Great Flood”, which premiered at 16:30 GMT on Friday.

With Pakistan’s economy already in crisis, the government is calling on global lenders for debt relief and for more help from the international community to fight the disaster.

“I don’t think they will make the $30 billion or $40 billion that we lost, but I think there should be some help, whether it’s international agencies getting more loans for Pakistan or other countries underwriting loans for Pakistan,” Miftah said. Ismail told Al Jazeera late last month when he was finance minister.

“There are a lot of things Western countries can do,” he said.

Ismail was replaced by veteran politician Ishak Dal on September 28.

Unprecedented floods – exacerbated by melting glaciers in the north – inundated nearly a third of the country and have been blamed on climate change.

Shirley Lehman, the country’s climate change minister, told Al Jazeera: “Humans are born with a memorandum, and this memo came through Pakistan. We are burning with our dependence on fossil fuels, and we are sending a message to nature. A war, and now nature is waging a war against us.”

Pakistan is one of the 10 most vulnerable countries in the world to climate change, but the country is not prepared for a disaster of this magnitude.

“Global warming will continue and our glaciers will continue to melt. What is the way forward? The way forward is the big polluters and the big emitters must pay compensation to the global south. I am not talking about compensation, I am talking about restitution , which is compensation for financial mechanisms for loss and damage, should be on the climate finance agenda,” Rahman said.

The Asian Development Bank announced a $2.5 billion package, the World Bank pledged $2 billion in aid, and the International Monetary Fund approved a $1.17 billion rescue package in August.

The United Nations has also revised its humanitarian appeal to raise $81 million to help Pakistan deal with the crisis, but many in the country have questioned the allocation of flood aid.

General Zafar Iqbal, coordinator of the National Flood Response and Coordination Centre, told Al Jazeera that the aid received so far has been “a drop in the ocean”.

“If you send 100 planes, they will need 1,600 tons, 2,000 tons or 2,500 tons of aid, but we need 300 to 400 tons of food a day,” he said.

“Just to give you an idea: Nearly 33 million people are affected, of which we have a million or 1.5 million people who are still living in tents … We have enough aid for five or six days,” he said. “We appreciate the aid, but we There needs to be more to keep people full.”

Catastrophic floods destroyed crops, roads, bridges, rail networks and critical infrastructure such as schools and hospitals.

Even with the government’s estimated $40 billion to rebuild and restore people’s lives, the work could take years, Rahman said. She said the government had no resources and the next monsoon was only a few months away.

You can watch the Al Jazeera special Pakistan: The Great flood”.

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