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More than half of all South Asians inhabitants or, 750 million people across Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka – were impacted by one or more climate-related disasters in the last 50 years. Research Suggested that the Global South Region will suffer the most from climate change, and that South Asia will be one of the hardest-hit regions. Climate change has been predicted to displace 62 million South Asian people by 2050. As a climate vulnerable region, we want to make a journalists’ network among south Asian Countries and work together for Creating Awareness as which the blower. 

Massage From President

Asish Gupta India
Photo: Asish Gupta

Dear Members and Colleagues,

As I enter my Frist year as President of the SACCJF, I notice that our SOUTH Asia is one of the most vulnerable regions to climate shocks. South Asia sits precariously on the front lines of the global climate crisis. As temperatures increase, the region that is experiencing a new climate normal is predicted to see hotter weather, longer monsoon seasons, and increased droughts. The region’s extreme vulnerability has long been apparent. South Asian countries have been affected by one or more climate-related disasters in the last two decades.

The region is living through a new climate normal in which intensifying heat waves, cyclones, droughts, and floods are testing the limits of government, businesses, and citizens’ ability to adapt. More than half of all South Asians were affected by one or more climate-related disasters in the last two decades, but the most affected countries are Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, the Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka.

The changing climate could sharply diminish living conditions for up to 800 million people in a region that already has some of the world’s poorest and most vulnerable populations. At the same time, South Asia is pioneering many climate-smart solutions, including innovative community approaches to coastal resilience, scaling up renewable energy, and regenerative forestry. Accelerating and scaling up these efforts is critical to building resilience to the rapidly warming climate in the region and reducing emissions.

The South Asian region is excessively wide open to climate change effects, including higher temperatures, sea-level rise, inconsistent rainfall, amplified occurrence and harshness of extreme weather incidents, increased overflow and glacial melting. It is anticipated to be the worst-impacted region by climate change and global warming because of the geophysical environment in addition to the socioeconomic and demographic backwardness of the population.

I think, we all South Asian countries need to work together to face the challenge of climate change. One has to work from his position. So those of us who work in the media; There is a need to raise awareness about them and raise the voice of the people of the region to the donor countries. This is why we have this organization. Hope to get everyone’s support.

Wishing you a good and successful 2023, and looking forward to seeing you soon.

Asish Gupta
India, February 21, 2023

Massage From Executive President

Karamot Ullah Biplob 2023
Photo: Karamot Ullah Biplob 

As India and Bangladesh emerge from devastating floods, one expert explains why South Asia is so vulnerable to climate change-related disasters.

South Asia has faced the brunt of extreme weather this summer – with the recent floods in Bangladesh and heat waves in India and Pakistan jointly impacting the region in the span of a month. This bout with hostile climate conditions is not new for the region. In fact, more than half of all South Asians – or 750 million people across Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka – were impacted by one or more climate-related disasters in the last 20 years, according to the World Bank. This number is only set to grow as temperatures continue to increase.

Research suggests that the Global South will suffer the most from climate change, and that South Asia will be one of the hardest-hit regions. Climate change is predicted to displace 62 million South Asian people by 2050, according to research from ActionAid International and Climate Action Network South Asia. So we want to protect our beloved soil, forests, mountains, rivers and seas. For that, I want to reach the world with a united voice.

Karamot Ullah Biplob, Executive President, SACCJF, Dhaka, Bangladesh

Massage From General Secretary

samrat
Photo: Asaduzzaman Shamrat

why we need to speak with a single voice?

All eight countries of South Asia, with nearly two billion population which is about 25 percent of the global demography, are living in an area of just 3 percent. Its total economy is only 5.21% (US$ 5 trillion) of the global economy. In simple words, a greater number of persons in this region are staying in very limited areas with little income. It is dominated by the Indian subcontinent and is bounded by the Indian Ocean in the south, and the Himalayas, Karakoram, and Pamir mountains in the north- major hotbed of climate change.

This one of the most vulnerable regions to climate change, all the eight countries are already facing natural calamities in a severe scale and erratic intervals. This has resulted in record breaking unseasonal rains causing massive floods unprecedented cyclones and at the same time devastating droughts with high rise in temperature. The net results are- death, loss of home, food scarcity , less water and widespread diseases. In addition to that, global warming in the region is leading to the loss of human habitat and migration problems. The only fear that is deemed as credible and common among the SAARC countries is climate change.

The South Asia region consists of the eight countries- Afghanistan, Pakistan, India, Nepal, Bhutan, Bangladesh, the Maldives and Sri Lanka. According to the variable index Bangladesh and Pakistan ranked sixth and seventh respectively as the countries most affected by climate change while India ranked fifth followed by Nepal. The tiny landlocked Himalayan Kingdom Bhutan seems to be in the best position far away from the rest six. Very little is known about war torn Afghanistan and at present the smallest island nation Maldives faces the chance of losing to the sea in some years to come. Another island nation Sri Lanka just coming out of economic and political upheavals and is not in a comfortable position either.

Bangladesh, which seems to be a victim of climate change, is widely considered as one of the most climate-vulnerable countries in the world. Though its contribution to global warming is negligible (less than 0.47% of global emissions), the country is impacted by all the adversities of climate change mostly due to its delta location.

Being highly prone to the appalling cataclysms of climate change that have resulted in to health, habitat, food and water security, the SAARC nations together have almost failed due to geo-politics between two countries who are born rivals- India and Pakistan.

Considering the above overall grim situation, media persons of South Asia for the first time have formed the South Asia Climate Change Journalist Forum with present headquarters in Dhaka. It has Office Bearers and Members from each country and has adopted a Constitution. The regional forum of journalists working on climate change was formally established during the UN Climate Conference (COP 27) in Sharm-El Sheikh (Egypt), in November 2022. Since then, it has had regular online and offline meetings on climate change within and among member countries. The host nation has taken the lead in organising several workshops and talks in coordination with different stakeholders including Governments. Even prior to the COP 28 at Dubai, meetings and discussions were held led by Bangladesh. A climate journal has already been published by the organization. This journal with the climate situation in each country has also articles from all the member nations. The SACCJF has an updated website which also carries important climate news and views. There are plans to go for more study, research, collaboration and a host of other work on climate change in cooperation with different stakeholders.

Asaduzzaman Shamrat, Secretary General
South Asian Climate Change Journalist’s Forum (SACCJF)
Dhaka, Bangladesh