• By: Shahid Ali Tareen

Just as climate change is affecting other areas of life, the agricultural sector is also under the influence of climate change. If we talk about the agricultural sector of Pakistan, Pakistan being an agricultural country depends on earning foreign exchange from the agricultural sector, however for the last fifteen years Pakistan has been under the influence of climate change and the country faced two major floods.

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province also suffered a lot from climate change. Similarly, Aftab, a farmer of Charsadda, had cultivated maize crop on about five acres of land last year and was expecting that this maize crop would yield a good yield and he would get a lot of profit, but due to untimely rain and hail. Their crops were destroyed.

Aftab Ahmad says, “I planted corn on five acres of land, which is the land of the Khan of the area, so that he could keep the stove burning and give his family two meals a day, but last year in the month of October, heavy rains and hailstorms came. My crops were destroyed and yielded only up to 30 maunds, which did not even cover the costs of fertilizer and seed. Normally, when I cultivated maize on five acres, it produced about 5 tonnes.

However, extreme weather conditions are damaging our crops. If the crops continue to be affected by the weather, this profession will have to be abandoned as the profits are low and the risk of losses is high due to climate change.

According to Adrara Statistics Pakistan, in the year 2021-22 in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, wheat crop was cultivated on an area of 458,000 acres, which yielded about 886,000 tons of corn. Similarly, in the year 2022-23, corn crop was cultivated on an area of four hundred and eighty thousand acres, from which about nine hundred and twenty three thousand tons of corn was produced. In the district Charsadda during the year 2021-22, maize crop was cultivated on thirteen thousand acres, which produced about forty thousand tons of maize. Fifty thousand tons of corn was produced.

Dr. Shehla Nazanin, a lecturer in environmental sciences at University of Peshawar, says that agriculture accounts for 20 percent of Pakistan’s foreign exchange reserves, while agriculture is the main source of income for about 80 percent of the population of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

If similar conditions remain and measures are not taken to control climate change, the agriculture sector may be under the influence of climate change in the coming years. If such projects and eco-friendly projects are not worked on, it will be difficult to prevent climate change and there is also a risk of food shortage. Such projects should be worked on and seeds should be created so that they can cope with climate change.

In COP 28, 70 million dollars were allocated under the Loss and Damaged Fund for those countries that are more affected by climate change, but now Pakistan should bring projects that can reduce the effects of climate change and help people involved in agriculture. Even if it has minimal effects.

By Media

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