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    Pakistan stood at fifth among the countries list for their vulnerability to the natural hazards while Chitral and Gilgit-Baltistan on top in Pakistan

    By Zahiruddin

    CHITRAL: The advisor to the Prime Minister on Climate Change Malik Amin Aslam has said that all the physical infrastructure will be made disaster resilient for which disaster factor assessment will be made at the time of planning of development projects in the areas prone to the natural hazards and the credit of this initiative goes to the PTI government.

    Addressing a function held in connection with International Disaster Management Day here on Tuesday, he said that Pakistan stood at fifth among the countries list for their vulnerability to the natural hazards while Chitral and Gilgit-Baltistan were the areas frequently hit by the natural calamities of different natures due to specific topography.

    “Over the course of past five years, the number of glaciers declared as sensitive and drifting towards explosion due to abnormally increasing temperature phenomenon causing glacial lake outburst flood (GLOF)  in Chitral  and wreaked havoc in different valleys here including Golen valley.

    All it needed that we must rush to make our vulnerable communities and infrastructures resilient to the natural disasters especially to GLOF to mitigate their negative effects and the magnitude of destructions and for this purpose, the second phase of the UNDP-funded GLOF project has been launched with the collaboration of Ministry Climate Change.

    Under this project, the process of  strengthening and expanding the institutional and coordination arrangements for implementing adaptation action plans and climate initiatives in GB and Chitral, scaling up early warning systems and disaster response measures in susceptible communities has been started”, he said.

    Mr. Aslam said that community-based disaster risk management committees were being organized and strengthened which will be given 50,000 US dollars each as endowment fund to support adaptation and recovery purposes.

    To mark the day, seminar at the University of Chitral was held  which consisted of various talks on disaster risk reduction from an educational perspective and impacts of disasters on biological species.

    The advisor to the prime minister spoke at the seminar highlighting Pakistan’s vulnerability to the adverse effects of Climate Change and exposure to natural disasters.

    The seminar was also addressed by project director of the university, Prof Dr. Badshah Munir Bukhari, additional secretary of climate change ministry and national director of GLOF project Judat Ayaz, national program manager Fahad Bangesh,  Fahad Ali Khan of Chitral University and  additional DC Chitral Abdul Wali Khan and others.

    Yet another activity of the day was to  conduct a Volunteer Plantation Drive under the Adopt a Tree initiative,  in collaboration with University of Chitral which was aimed at contribution  to environment preservation and reduce the impacts of climate change.

    To end the day a Mock Drill exercise was conducted by Rescue 1122 to demonstrate relief and rescue to disaster affected people. The purpose of this mock exercise was to test the efficacy of the Disaster Management Plan, and master the use of machinery during a disaster situation through practicing safety-related measures pertaining to GLOF and other disaster events.

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