Environment

Persistent Drought led to Decline of the Indus Valley Civilization
Mohenjo daro’s new master plan may shed more lightBy Sikandar Ali Hullio | The News International

Moenjodaro
(Credit: Smithsonian.org)

The rise and decline of the Indus Valley Civilisation has always been a mystery. Various archaeologists and anthropologists have tried to unfold this mystery through different theories. This question was recently answered in the scientific weekly, ‘Nature’, in its edition of the first week of March. The article says that a 200-year drought doomed the Indus Valley Civilisation. palaeoclimatologist, Yama …

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The irresistible lure of Pakistan’s ‘killer mountain’By AFP

Nanga Parbat
(Credit rockhawks.com)

ISLAMABAD May 4: Gunmen shot dead 10 foreign tourists at its base camp last year, but for serious mountaineers, the allure of Pakistan’s “killer mountain” remains irresistible. Militants stormed Nanga Parbat base camp on the night of June 22, 2013, dragging the climbers out of their tents and shooting them point blank along with their local guide. The massacre badly hit …

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A Stitch in Time Could Have Saved at least 62 LivesRina Saeed Khan Dawn Newspaper

Tharis in drought season
(Credit: Fayyaz Naich)

As global average temperatures rise, scientific models indicate that human society will suffer increased heat-related illness and death, food insecurity, water stress and spread of infectious diseases, in addition to increased climate related disasters. Pakistan is, in fact, increasingly vulnerable to floods and droughts caused by a changing climate. At first glance it appears that the recent deaths of at …

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Famine Draws Thar Desert into SpotlightBy Javed Jabbar March 9, 2014 Dawn Newspaper

Tharis-in-moonlight

REPORTS in the media during the past few days about a virtual famine in Tharparkar, about a sharp increase in deaths, especially of children due to malnutrition or negligence, and about desperate outward migration of residents have caused justified widespread concern and prompted governmental, judicial, civil and military responses. While conditions certainly deserve alleviation, the doom-like scenario misrepresents a substantial …

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Believe It: Global Warming Can Produce More Intense SnowsBy Chris Mooney Mother Jones 2014

NY in grip of 2014 snow storms
(Credit: news.xin.msn.com)

We all remember “Snowmageddon” in February of 2010. Even as Washington, D.C., saw 32 inches of snowfall for the month of February—more than it has seen in any February since 1899—conservatives decided to use the weather to mock global warming. Oklahoma Senator James Inhofe and his family even built an igloo on Capitol Hill and called it “Al Gore’s New …

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Energy shortages force Pakistanis to scavenge for wood, threatening tree canopyBy Tim Craig Washington Post

Gul Mohar tree in Pakistan

ISLAMABAD, Feb 1 — Ramesh Iqbal lives in one of the Pakistani capital’s middle-class neighborhoods and attends college. But on a recent day, he and two friends emerged from a wooded area, their arms full of the logs and branches they had to gathered to warm their homes. “We never thought we would face such a situation,” said Iqbal, 24, …

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Balochistan quake victims still homelessBy Naseer Memon The News

Awaran victims
(Credit: balochsamacharan.com)

Two catastrophic temblors jolted Awaran and Kech districts of Balochistan in September last year. While the episode has been obscured by a series of new headlines in media, miseries continue to shake the affectees. According to the data of the National Disaster Management Authority, 386 people were killed and 816 injured. Malar and Mashkai tehsils of Awaran were the worst …

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India’s Coal Power Plants Causing Fog In PakistanBy Arshad Abbasi, Dawn newspaper

Fog in Pakistan (Credit: dunyatv.com)

THE density of the fog that has been blanketing parts of Pakistan for some years now has been steadily increasing. Steps urgently need to be taken to mitigate its effects. Many mistakenly think that the fog that has become the norm during the winters is the natural outcome of falling temperatures and relative humidity. However, fog created in this manner …

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Pakistan remains top destination for ship breaking industryAFP

Ship breaking in Pakistan
(Credit: customstoday.com.pk)

PARIS, Jan 9: Pakistan, along with India and Bangladesh, remained the market leaders in global ship breaking, with the subcontinent accounting for more than two-thirds of business, a French monitoring group said on Thursday. In 2013, 1,119 ships went to the world’s breaker’s yards, a decline of 16 per cent over 2012 which was an “exceptional year,” the environmental watchdog Robin …

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Reko Diq project – take a decision before it is too lateBy ABID MUSTIKHAN, The Express Tribune

Reko Diq Balochistan (Credit: tethyan.com)

CHAGAI, Nov 17: The CEO of Tethyan Copper Company (TCC) manages to wear local attire (shalwar kameez) for a meeting with the then chief minister of Balochistan. An hour prior to the meeting, I go and meet the secretary mines who is busy in other matters. As he sees me: “Oh yes, we do have a meeting in one hour, let …

Posted in Environment, Pakistan Politics | 1 Comment

Harnessing the sun privately in LahoreBy Xari Jalil, dawn.com

Lahore home powered by sun (Credit: lnx.com)

On an average summer’s day when the rest of Lahore sullenly waits in the heat for the electricity to return, Shahid Razzaq’s family lounges peacefully, their air conditioner running and all appliances working. While in other households the sudden and frequent power blackouts are greeted with groans and resigned sighs, the Razzaq family doesn’t even notice. And they certainly never …

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Giving Foreign Predators a ‘License to Kill’By Naeem Sadiq

Hunting Houbaras (Credit: uaeinteract.org)

Every winter Pakistan plays host to two exceptionally diverse species of visitors. The first to arrive are the Houbara bustards, taxonomically classified as ‘chlamydotis undulata’. Conspicuous by their quiet, peaceful and graceful arrival, they bring with them a sense of beauty, serenity and diversity. They live on seeds and insects and enrich our harsh and arid ecosystem with their breathtaking …

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Climate change threatens Makli necropolisShahid Husain - The News International

Makli (Credit: migrant-ackermariano.blogspot.com)

Karachi, Oct 15: Unusual rain patterns across Sindh in 2010, essentially caused by climate changes, coupled with man-made disasters, have adversely affected Makli, one of the world’s largest necropolis, situated in Thatta District in southern Pakistan. “As a result of the climate change, high humidity levels, which had previously been confined to the port city of Karachi, were recorded throughout …

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Balochistan Earthquake Tremors Felt up to New DehliNewly formed Gwadar islet Emits Gas
By Simon Tomlinson - dailymail.co.uk

Islet formed near Gwardar port (Credit: guardian.co.uk)

A major earthquake has killed at least 327 people and left thousands more injured and homeless in a remote region of southwestern Pakistan. The Pakistani military said it was rushing troops and helicopters to Awaran district in Baluchistan province where the magnitude 7.7 quake struck on Tuesday afternoon. The quake was felt as far away as New Delhi, the Indian …

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Secrets of the Thar DesertBy Nafisa Hoodbhoy

Peacock in Thar (Credit: Fayyaz Naich)

The secret to the spiritual tranquility of rural Sindh appears to emanate from deep inside the Tharparkar desert, that straddles the Indo Pak border. Although Hindus make up some 40 percent of the desert, their shrines and idols – as well as Jain temples, are as much a part of the landscape as the mosques for the majority Muslim populace. …

Posted in Environment, Indo-Pak Relations, Religion | 14 Comments

A Plea to Save Mohenjo DaroBy Bilal Akbar - thenews.com

Moenjodaro (Credit: en.in.wikipedia.org)

The trip to Mohenjo-Daro is assuredly arduous, but it is nonetheless worthwhile. Rising tall above the mist enveloped and fertile plains of rural Sindh, Mohenjo-Daro is a breathtaking spectacle, a reminder of the historical might and significance of our country. Startling a person at first sight by its immense splendor, Mohenjo-Daro compels us to imagine for a moment the sheer …

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Pakistan has Major Gas & Oil Reserves – US authorityKhaleeq Kiani - Dawn Newspaper

ISLAMABAD, Aug 28: In a major development, the Energy Information Administration (EIA), the American federal authority on energy statistics and analysis, has estimated fresh recoverable shale gas reserves of 105 trillion cubic feet (TCF) and more than nine billion barrels of oil in Pakistan. These estimates of recoverable hydrocarbon reserves are many times larger than so far proven reserves of …

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Alternative Energy is Key to Ending Power Shortage – NawazThe Daily Times

Solar panels in Thatta
(Credit: facebook.com)

ISLAMABAD, June 27: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Wednesday said that Pakistan’s huge alternative energy potential holds the key to overcoming the acute energy crisis facing the country. “All avenues need to be explored and every effort needs to be put in to tap in the alternative energy potential of the country,” the prime minister emphasised while speaking at a …

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Siachen Glacier shrinking due to rising temperaturesIndia & Pakistan army presence speed glacial melt down - ANI

Siachen Glacier (Credit: topnews.in)

Karachi, Jan. 4: The Siachen Glacier has reduced by 5.9 km in longitudinal extent between 1989 and 2009 because of rising temperatures, researchers say. Human presence at Siachen may also be affecting the neighbouring glaciers of Gangotri, Miyar, Milan and Janapa which feed Ganges, Chenab and Sutlej rivers, the Dawn reported. According to the study by Dr Ghulam Rasul of …

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Ancient Buddha, Modern PerilBy Andrew Lawler - The New Times Sunday Review

Mes Aynek site in Afghanistan (Credit: penn.museum)

Kabul, Dec 22: WHEN the Taliban blasted the famous Bamiyan Buddhas with artillery and dynamite in March 2001, leaders of many faiths and countries denounced the destruction as an act of cultural terrorism. But today, with the encouragement of the American government, Chinese engineers are preparing a similar act of desecration in Afghanistan: the demolition of a vast complex of …

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  • Cover Reviews

    "It was her fierce independence and commitment to her country that inspired [Hoodbhoy’s] decision to become a newspaper reporter –...

    Frances Stead Sellers
    Deputy National Editor, Health, Science and the Environment, The Washington Post

    "A powerful and courageous voice that represents the best of Pakistan’s emerging journalism… The first insider view of developments in...

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    Author and Director South Asia Center

    "Nafisa Hoodbhoy’s detailed reporting helped me look at the complex world of Pakistani politics differently. Hoodbhoy’s proximity to key players...

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    Author and Quaid-i-Azam Chair Professor

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