Pakistan 2022 Floods Report

                                                                                                                                    Muhammad Hassan ABBAS

Pakistan, the world’s second-largest Muslim-populated country in the world has suffered severe flood damage during the previous few months. The catastrophic floods have obliterated entire neighborhoods, washed away homes, damaged crops and swept away highways and bridges.

There are more than 33 million people directly affected people who were forced into internal migration. Since June 14, 2022, floods in Pakistan have been responsible for the deaths of 1480 persons. The floods were brought on by monsoon rains that were more than normal and melting glaciers, which followed a severe heat wave; all these factors are linked to climate change. It has been the worst flood in the country’s history and the deadliest natural disaster globally since then. Because of the severe flooding, Pakistan declared a state of emergency on August 25.

Around “one-third” of the country has been directly affected by flooding, which impacted 33 million people. The government of Pakistan has estimated that the flooding across the country has cost the country a total of USD 30 billion.

The Secretary General of the United Nations, António Guterres, referred to the catastrophe as “a monsoon on steroids.” He also paid a solidarity and support trip to Pakistan for two days.

Also, during the previous week, the country’s Climate Minister Senator Sherry Rehman stated that one-third of the country was submerged in water, and officials have pointed the finger of blame at climate change for the catastrophe.

Meanwhile, as Pakistan struggles with the unprecedented floods, World Health Organisation (WHO) has also warned about the worsening crisis in the country ravaged by the record rains.

“We are following closely and with deep concern the humanitarian crisis currently facing the people of Pakistan as a result of devastating monsoon floods,” said Dr. Ahmed Al-Mandhari, WHO Regional Director for the Eastern Mediterranean, on the floods in Pakistan.

Dr. Al-Mandhari claimed that the magnitude of devastation and destruction caused by the floods is unprecedented in Pakistan. He blamed long-term global climate change for worsening weather conditions. WMO said Pakistan is experiencing one of its worst floods ever. As water levels rise and pressure the country’s dams, the human and economic toll will climb.

Background

Senator Rehman said the provinces of Sindh and Balochistan received more rainfall than the norm for August, with Sindh receiving 784% and Balochistan receiving 500 percent more, respectively. India and Bangladesh both saw monsoon rains that were significantly more than typical. The Indian Ocean is one of the oceans that is warming at one of the fastest rates in the world, at an average rate of 1 degree Celsius (1.8 degrees Fahrenheit) (while global temperatures are now at 1.2 degrees Celsius (2.2 degrees Fahrenheit) above pre-industrial temperatures, oceans, in general, are at around 0.7 degrees Celsius (1.3 degrees Fahrenheit)).

It is thought that higher temperatures at the ocean’s surface will cause an increase in monsoon rainfall. In addition, the southern region of Pakistan was hit by two consecutive heat waves in May and June, both of which broke records for temperature and were rendered more likely by climate change. These factors contributed to a mighty thermal low, resulting in higher rains than average. Additionally, glacier flooding occurred in Gilgit-Baltistan as a result of the heat waves. Even though its contribution to global greenhouse gas emissions is less than one percent, Pakistan is one of the countries most at risk from the effects of climate change.

Situation Overview

The National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) – that is authorized to lead efforts to deal with disasters — ofPakistan reported 1.17 million damaged buildings and 566,000 destroyed houses as of September 8. Total of nearly 1,400 deaths and more than 12,700 injuries, including at least 496 children killed and about 4,000 injured across the country.

Over 1,600 km of highways were damaged or destroyed last week. This has hindered efforts to send supplies into affected communities, as has the collapse of 246 bridges.

More than 22,000 schools have been damaged in Sindh, Balochistan, Punjab, and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, and over 5,500 are being used to shelter displaced persons, halting schooling for nearly 3.5 million children.

The NDMA reports that 33 million people have been affected by the torrential rains and floods and has designated 81 districts as ‘calamity stricken. Nearly 800,000 refugees dwell in districts declared ‘calamity stricken’ by the Pakistani Government.

Over 1.2 million hectares of agricultural land in Sindh have been devastated, while 61% of Balochistan’s livestock caretakers have reported transboundary animal diseases.

NDMA claims 500,000 animals have died in Balochistan due to rainfall and floods, representing 66% of the 755,000 livestock mortality nationally. Standing water continues to blanket vast swaths of the country; satellite-detected water extents measured by UNOSAT.

In a graphic view, you can see the overview of the current situation
 
 
  Source NDMA August 31, 2022

Economic Loss

The anticipated economic loss from the historic floods in Pakistan is now around USD 30 billion. Floods hampered agriculture growth. The floods have devastated crops on 8.25 million acres, up from the earlier estimate of 4.2 million acres, according to The News International. Cotton, rice, and minor crops have been harmed, and improper dewatering can affect wheat sowing. Most of the country’s cotton crop has vanished, and wheat sowing is threatened.

The Ministry of National Food Security must boost the wheat minimum support price for the next crop. The officials met with overseas donors and promised to transparently use every euro to offset flood damages, The News International said.

Per capita income is expected to decline due to economic losses and slower GDP growth. The administration expected 5% GDP growth this year.

Poverty and unemployment will rise from 21.9% to 36%. Pakistan’s Government estimates that 37% of the population is poor after floods in 118 districts.

A committee with representatives from the Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Planning, State Bank of Pakistan, FBR, PIDE, and others found that poverty and unemployment rose from 21.9% to over 36%.

The Health Sector Status

Access to health facilities, healthcare professionals, vital medicines, and medical supplies remains inadequate. Diarrhea, malaria, acute respiratory infections, skin and eye diseases, and typhoid impact thousands of individuals. Initial indications indicate a surge in dengue cases in refugee villages in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. At the same time, acute watery diarrhea has afflicted 45 districts in Balochistan, Sindh, Punjab, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, and Islamabad Capital Territory.

Nearly 50% of impacted households in evaluated Balochistan areas earn their living by maintaining animals. 36% reported losing at least one livestock asset, 46% reported damage to livestock shelters, and 29% reported animal feedstock loss. 

Already cash-strapped by record-high inflation and economic recessions, low-income families in Pakistan have been driven to breaking point by historic floods—with over 1,000 lives lost and homes and livelihoods devastated. Submerged roads and health facilities, including primary health units and district hospitals, threaten pregnant women, children, and the elderly.

While the government’s relief and rehabilitation plan for flood victims is lacking, it’s evident that Pakistan is paying the price for an avoidable calamity that wasn’t its fault. Pakistan has historically contributed 0.4% of greenhouse gas emissions, per the World Bank and Asian Development Bank. It’s one of the most climate-vulnerable nations. This disparity means all countries must create climate-change solutions and climate justice measures that prioritize equity and accountability.

At present, Pakistan’s resources must be used to rehabilitate its people and rebuild its infrastructure, not to pay external debts. Providing climate change reparations is the bare minimum, for which global leaders must be held responsibleAccording to the National Disaster Management Authority, floods since mid-June have fully damaged over 370 thousand houses. In contrast, over 730 thousand more have been partially injured. Eighty-four percent of this damage has been reported from Sindh province alone. The northern Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and eastern Punjab provinces also saw extensive damage.

Sindh and Balochistan also accounted for more than 50% of the flood-related deaths in this monsoon season.

As of Wednesday, half of Pakistan’s districts have been declared calamity-hit, according to the NDMA.

Colossal volumes of water are pouring into the Indus river, which flows down the country’s middle from its northern peaks to southern plains, bringing flooding along its length.

Sindh has been most affected by the severe rainfall and flooding this monsoon season, which is surprising given that states Sindh and state Balochistan are drought-prone areas. Nearly 88% of all damaged or destroyed houses – over 1.52 million – are in Sindh, and the province has recorded the most human casualties: 577 killed and 8,321 injured out of a 

 Protection Sector reports that GBV, child protection, and other protection problems have doubled since the pre-monsoon period. 40% of damaged roads are in Sindh, 24% in  K.P., and 22% in Balochistan. 

Over 190,000 more individuals are in aid camps than a week earlier. Many more live in host communities., including 210,000 in Peshawar, 170,000 in Quetta, 77,700 in Nowshera, and 71,500 in Karachi, Sindh. Continued rainfall and the submergence of some schools and learning centers prevent thorough assessments. Still, estimates show that 61 refugee village schools (26 in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and 35 in Balochistan) have been impacted, disrupting schooling and learning for almost 27,000 children.

https://graphics.reuters.com/PAKISTAN-WEATHER/FLOODS/akpezbzxgvr/

Education Sector Loss And Damage

At least 22,000 schools have been affected, especially in Sindh province, according to UNICEF, Save the Children report; provisional data from provincial Education Departments show that at least 17,566 schools have been damaged or destroyed, the U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said in its latest report on the floods.

Flooding, school devastation, and travel restrictions have affected the education of over 3.5 million Pakistani youngsters. (UNICEF)

Before the floods, 23 million 5 to 16-year-olds in Pakistan weren’t in school. Distance and safety to schools are the major hurdles to schooling in rural locations, according to 29% of her parents. Rural girls are twice as likely to skip school as urban girls (43 % vs. 21 %, respectively). (World Bank Report)

Food Security And Livelihoods

According to NDMA, Damaged crops: At least 4.5 million acres of crops have been affected, and at least 833,000 livestock have been lost. Lack of resources to buy food and depletion of assets: Some 73% of affected households are estimated to have inadequate resources to purchase food (OCHA, UNICEF).

Lack of physical access to food Increase in prices: According to the chairman of Karachi Wholesalers Grocers Association, floods have increased demand by 25% for various essential food items, with many prices beyond the reach of many flood-affected people. The cost of rice 386 per kg reportedly increased by 79% compared to January, the price of Masur (grain) +50%, gram pulse +50%, mash +40%, and moong +27% 

(Dawn News 11/09/2022). 

Risk of shortages of milk and meat: Due to the heavy losses of livestock, a 30 to 40% reduction in milk and meat could be expected in the coming months, leading to severe shortages, according to agriculture and dairy business experts. Due to the lack of fodder, even surviving animals might not be able to produce milk, aggravating the situation (Pakistan Today 08/09/2022).

Health Main Issues And Needs

According to a World Health Organization report, Damaged infrastructure: At least 1,460 health facilities have been affected, of which 432 are fully damaged, and 1,028 are partially damaged. – Rising number of injured people: 12,722 injured people have been reported since September 8, which has more than doubled in a week.

 The high number of disease cases: 660,120 people have reported various illnesses, most of which are diarrhea (14,000 daily points), skin infections (15,000 daily cases), and acute respiratory diseases (13,000 daily cases), at government-run medical camps in flood-affected areas since July. (Dawn 05/09/2022). 

Eye infection, typhoid, hepatitis A, malaria, dengue fever, and snake bites are also growing. Maternal health: Almost 650,000 pregnant women in the flood-affected areas require maternal health services, with up to 73,000 women expected to deliver next month. Mental health needs: 43% of girls, 45% of boys, and 55% of caregivers were reported to be showing signs of stress according to a recent U.N. Rapid Needs Assessment 

Limited stock of emergency medicines, supplies, and surgical items. Polio cases: On September 12, Pakistan registered its 18th case of polio this year. Difficulties in accessing health centers and the disruption in vaccination campaigns due to the floods will likely drive further outbreaks and cases. (OCHCHA UNICEF)

World Health Organization

Logistics And Access Main Issues And Needs

Damaged roads: More than 13,000 km of roads have been damaged by these rains, and at least 390 bridges have been affected across the country, a 100% increase in only 24h due to the new data provided by the Government of Sindh and consolidated in the NDMA update last September 12. Lift on foreign goods: the Pakistani Government lifted some of the restrictions on foreign goods for 90 days to provide relief after the floods of recent weeks. Latest updates (NDMA 08/09/2022).

Diminishing flood waters in northern Pakistan and repairing transportation infrastructure in Balochistan have augmented humanitarian access (USAID 09/09/2022). – Disrupted telecommunication networks: The number of non-functional sites had been reduced to 190, most of which were in Sindh (Dawn 13/09/2022).

Protection Main Issues And Needs

High displacement rates, with lack of privacy and safe places, reported across locations, raising protection risks-High number of separated and unaccompanied children reported across areas (no figure available) – High number of people who lost civil documentation in all affected provinces. Latest updates – GBV and child protection concerns: Gender-based violence as well as child protection and other protection concerns have reportedly more than doubled since the pre-monsoon period, according to the Protection Sector, Shelter/NFIs Main issues, and needs – Destruction of shelters: 1.18 million houses have been partially damaged, while 567,000 have been destroyed. – Loss of NFIs: 30% of those families who have lost their houses have also lost all their essential household items. Latest updates – Damage to shelters remains: More than half a million more houses in Pakistan were reported damaged or destroyed in the past week only. (NDMA, UNOCHA September 2022)

Water Borne Issues

Main issues and needs: destruction of infrastructure; 30% of water systems are estimated to have been damaged which has led to contamination of drinking water. The rising waters has led to lack of access to sufficient and quality water where 63% of the population reported access to adequate drinking water as a serious issue. 

Source: UN OCHA

Global Aid International Help

Many friendly countries and international institutions rushed to help Pakistan. China, Turkiye, UAE are the main three countries which sent aid on priority basis.

Pakistan got $370 million in aid from the World Bank. The Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) of the United Nations has given $3 million to help the affected areas. The U.N. is asking for an extra $160 million in emergency aid to help Pakistan with flood relief.

On September 9 and 10, António Guterres, the Secretary-General of the United Nations, went to Pakistan to show his support for flood victims and ask other countries to do more to help. 

On August 23, the European Union said it would send €350,000 (nearly 76 million rupees) to Pakistan immediately for humanitarian aid. On August 28, it got another €2.35 million for humanitarian emergencies.

The World Health Organization gave 10 million dollars to help with health emergencies.

Through KS relief, Saudi Arabia sent 100 emergency relief trucks with 10,000 food packages weighing 950 tonnes to 17 flood-damaged districts in Pakistan on August 22.

This would help more than 70,000 people. In a statement released on August 25, a spokesman for the Chinese Foreign Ministry sent their deepest condolences to the people who the floods and their families had hurt. Urgent humanitarian aid, including 25,000 tents and other supplies, is being sent out immediately. In addition, 4,000 tents, 50,000 blankets, 50,000 tarps, and other supplies provided by China as part of the China–Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPECsocial )’s and people’s livelihood cooperation have been put on the frontline for relief.

The Red Cross Society of China has already given the Pakistan Red Crescent Society $300,000 in cash to help with emergencies. On August 30, China said it would give $14.5 million (100 million yuan) in aid. China gave another aid package worth 300 million yuan (about $43.5 million) on September 3.

Turkish organizations are at the forefront of helping flood victims in Pakistan, which has been hit by a devastating flood that killed over 1400 people and destroyed infrastructure.

The first team of the Turkish Disaster and Emergency Management Presidency (AFAD) arrived in Pakistan on Aug. 7, when the flood hit the provinces of southwestern Balochistan and southern Sindh. Another team of 20 members arrived after a massive flood hit the provinces of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Punjab, and Sindh in the last week of August.

Ankara has so far sent 12 military aircraft and four “Kindness Trains” loaded with relief supplies, including thousands of tents, emergency food items, medicines, boats, kitchen items, baby food, and other goods.

The Turkish Red Crescent has also dispatched two trucks loaded with relief supplies.

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan sent a high-level delegation led by Turkish Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu and Minister of Environment and Urbanization Murat Kurum along with the heads of several Turkish relief organizations to Pakistan soon after the floods to express solidarity with the government and people of Pakistan and to monitor the devastation caused by floods.

Turkey sent $58 million worth of aid to Pakistan in the first stage. This included 10,000 tents, 50,000 food packages, 50,000 hygiene packages, and 10,000 baby food packages.

A view of submerged houses following unprecedented rain and floods in Pakistan. 
Photograph: Reuters

REFERENCES

https://www.downtoearth.org.in/blog/climate-change/loss-and-damage-2022-pakistan-floods-heighten-need-for-climate-reparations-84721

https://reliefweb.int/disaster/fl-2022-000254-pak

https://reliefweb.int/report/pakistan/wfp-pakistan-situation-report-12-september-2022

https://www.thenewhumanitarian.org/news-feature/2022/09/05/Pakistan-floods-urgent-questions-climate-crisis

https://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/images/150279/devastating-floods-in-pakistan

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2022_Pakistan_floods#cite_note-Zoha-15

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2022-08-29/floods-ravage-pakistan-passing-1-000-dead-10-billion-in-damage

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-62811704

https://www.wsj.com/articles/in-southern-pakistan-a-sea-made-of-monsoon-waters-swallows-villages-11662456600?st=t3vk5en19bb3npl&reflink=desktopwebshare_permalink

https://graphics.reuters.com/PAKISTAN-WEATHER/FLOODS/akpezbzxgvr/

https://reliefweb.int/report/pakistan/pakistan-floods-2022-bi-weekly-highlights-update-4-13-september

file:///C:/Users/Hassan%20Abbas/Downloads/DFS%20Pakistan%20Floods%20Biweekly%20Highlights%20%234%2013%20September.pdf

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2022/sep/13/pakistan-rushes-to-protect-key-power-station-as-flood-threat-rises

http://www.emro.who.int/pak/pakistan-infocus/situation-reports-on-the-flooding-in-pakistan.html?format=html

http://www.emro.who.int/images/stories/Pakistans_2nd_sit_rep_final.pdf?ua=1

https://reliefweb.int/report/pakistan/pakistan-education-sector-working-group-eie-bulletin-11th-september-2022

https://graphics.reuters.com/PAKISTAN-WEATHER/FLOODS/akpezbzxgvr/

https://reliefweb.int/report/pakistan/pakistan-2022-monsoon-floods-situation-report-no-5-9-september-2022

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