Afghanistan in need of $22 Bln to combat negative impacts of climate change

KABUL (SW) – The Afghanistan’s National Environmental Protection Agency (NEPA), through a three-day conference in Kabul, warns of the negative consequences of climate change in the country, emphasizing the need for global cooperation and the resumption of stalled projects in this sector.

Rouhullah Amin, the head of the Climate Change Department at NEPA, says that Afghanistan requires $22 billion to respond to and mitigate the negative impacts of climate change. He added, “Climate change has practically placed Afghanistan in its most severe state, disrupting ecosystem stability; changes in temperature and precipitation, meaning changes in these two parameters, have led to climate hazards such as floods, periodic droughts, storms, dust storms, hailstorms, and frost. According to assessments, sectors such as water, agriculture, energy, ecosystems, biodiversity, and health are among the most vulnerable.”

Amin emphasizes that part of the challenges arising from climate change in Afghanistan can be addressed by reviving 32 stalled environmental projects.

The National Environmental Protection Agency, along with the Ministries of Energy and Water, and Agriculture, Irrigation, and Livestock, in a meeting with some members of the United Nations Committee, call for special attention and joint cooperation to combat climate change in Afghanistan.

On the other hand, victims of climate change in various provinces demand special attention from the de-facto government to reduce the negative impacts.

Agha Wali, a resident of Helmand, says, “I had cultivated 30 jeribs of land with wheat; it has all been destroyed because of hailstorm, not due to lack of watering or plowing. It is not just us; the situation is the same in six villages.”

Similarly, Karimdad, a resident of Ghazni, also adds, “One of our neighbors’ houses collapsed; there were casualties and floods were approaching our village from all four sides.”

However, environmental experts warn that if the world does not cooperate with the de-facto government to combat the negative impacts of climate change, the number of people losing their lives and food security will increase.

Basit Rahmani, an environmental expert, says, “The main source of agriculture and livestock in Afghanistan is water; the precipitation rate alters environmental security and can pose a dangerous outlook for Afghanistan, putting food security at risk.”

Lack of recognition of the Islamic Emirate by the world have resulted in Afghanistan not being invited to important climate change conferences, and projects in this sector have not been implemented.