Threats of Cli­mate Change

Southasia - - Briefing -

The re­cently launched Hu­man De­vel­op­ment Re­port has put Bhutan’s en­vi­ron­men­tal poli­cies at a risk of re­ver­sal from the threats of cli­mate change. This is a chal­lenge to which the Bhutanese must rise to, although it’s not of its mak­ing, the re­port noted.

“Sus­tain­ing Bhutan’s hu­man de­vel­op­ment progress must form a national pri­or­ity and the ba­sis for in­ter­na­tional co­op­er­a­tion. Ac­tions to ad­dress cli­mate change by the govern­ment should now be aligned by the Five Year Plans,” stated the re­port.

Main­stream­ing environment into poli­cies is one of the 14 rec­om­men­da­tions the re­port has made for Bhutan to ad­dress the chal­lenges of cli­mate change. At present, there is no spe­cific national pol­icy or pro­gram for cli­mate change adap­ta­tion and mit­i­ga­tion for Bhutan to guide ex­ter­nal as­sis­tance, apart from the National Adap­ta­tion Plan of Ac­tion.

An­other rec­om­men­da­tion is to strengthen re­search and ca­pac­ity de­vel­op­ment to pro­duce re­li­able and ac­cu­rate in­for­ma­tion. It should also de­velop the me­te­o­ro­log­i­cal and hy­dro­log­i­cal ser­vices by im­prov­ing the ca­pac­ity to col­lect and an­a­lyze weather data, as well as pre­pare early warn­ing and haz­ard fore­cast­ing.

The re­port rec­om­mends Bhutan to pro­mote green in­dus­try and stated that it needs to cur­tail con­sump­tion of fos­sil fu­els by in­dus­tries to re­duce green­house gas emis­sions.

An­other im­por­tant rec­om­men­da­tion is to pro­tect ed­u­ca­tion in­fra­struc­ture from cli­mate shocks, and to make cli­mate ed­u­ca­tion part of cur­ric­ula.

Ear­lier this year, Bhutan’s Prime Min­is­ter Jigmi Thin­ley is­sued a dire warn­ing about the im­pact of Hi­malayan cli­mate change, say­ing it could wreck the tiny king­dom’s am­bi­tious plans to be a world leader in hy­dropower.

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