Scaling-up of Glacial Lake Outburst Flood (GLOF) risk reduction in Northern Pakistan
Rising temperatures have melted glaciers, creating glacial lakes in Northern Pakistan. These carry the risk of outburst flooding events, threatening over 7 million people. Early warning systems, engineering structures and disaster management policies will reduce risk, protecting local communities and providing early warning of devastating flood events.
The melting of the Hindu Kush, Karakoram, and Himalayan glaciers in Northern Pakistan due to rising temperatures have created 3,044 glacial lakes in the federally-administered territory of Gilgit-Baltistan (GB) and the province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP). It is estimated that 33 of these glacial lakes are hazardous and likely to result in glacial lake outburst floods. Such flooding releases millions of cubic metres of water and debris in just a few hours, resulting in the loss of lives, destruction of property and infrastructure, and severe damage to livelihoods in some of the most remote areas of Pakistan.
The project will build 250 engineering structures including damns, ponds, spill ways, tree plantation and drainage to reduce risk. At the same time, the development of disaster management policies and the introduction of weather monitoring stations, flood gauges, hydrological modelling and early warning systems will increase the ability to respond rapidly to flood scenarios.
The project has an estimated lifespan of 15 years.
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Executive Coordinator and Director, Global Environment Finance
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Environmental Policy Specialist Global Environmental Finance, Bureau for Policy and Programme Support (BPPS)/Global Policy Network
National Designated Authority
Ministry of Climate Change
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