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Catastrophic Flooding: The Leveling of Pakistan

Madison Woodward

Since June 14th, 2022, more than a third of Pakistan has been submerged by heavy monsoon rains, displacing over 30 million individuals and causing the deaths of at least 1,700. The storms have devastated the South Asian country with torrential floods and severe landslides, killing 1.1 million livestock and destroying 5.5 million acres of cropland as well.

The rains and floods have ceased since the beginning of the monsoon, but the majority of the farmland is still waterlogged, causing infectious diseases, such as cholera, dengue, and malaria to spread and food shortages to rise. In addition to the loss of crops, farmers have had to delay planting their winter crops, straining the food system in Pakistan. The International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD) reported that floodwaters would reduce cotton in Sindh, a province in Pakistan, by 88%, and their rice crop by 61%.

All of these contributing factors are nodding to a gloomy direction; the World Food Organization has announced that by March 2023, the number of people requiring food assistance will reach approximately 14.6 million. Not only is the increase in famine a looming problem, over a thousand medical facilities have also been wiped out, leaving families to suffer as they wait for help.

According to recent scientific analyses, there are linkages between climate change and the recent disastrous events in Pakistan. The nation has more than 7,000 glaciers, the most in any non-polar region, but the glaciers are dwindling fast. Temperatures reached an alarming high, maintaining 120 degrees Fahrenheit for an extended period, triggering 16 glacial lake outbursts in Pakistan just this year. Warmer temperatures also result in a wetter monsoon season, due to warmer air possessing more water vapor.

Pakistan’s Prime Minister, Shehbaz Sharif, declared in September, “Pakistan has never seen a starker and more devastating example of the impact of global warming… Nature has unleashed her fury on Pakistan without looking at our carbon footprint, which is next to nothing. Our actions did not contribute to this.” His words speak truth—Pakistan contributes to less than 1% of global greenhouse gas emissions. However, developing nations, such as Pakistan, are suffering the most from extreme weather disasters in comparison to wealthy, industrialized countries, who are mainly responsible for the changes in climate patterns, like the United States. Multiple studies have proved this—Pakistan is the 8th most affected country when relating to extreme weather events, while the U.S. ranks 109 out of 191 countries on a risk index.

There are many steps that need to be taken in order to prevent similar tragedies from occurring in the future, and that mainly relies on the hands of big corporations and the government. What can be done now includes donating to reliable charities and most importantly, spreading awareness to others in your community.


  1. “The Anatomy of Pakistan’s 2022 Floods,” Mariyam Suleman Anees.

  2. “Flood Woes Continue in Pakistan,” NASA Earth Observatory.

  3. “Climate change likely helped cause deadly Pakistan floods, scientists find,” Rebecca Hersher.

  4. “2022 Pakistan Floods,” CDP.

  5. “In Pakistan, 33 Million People Have Been Displaced by Climate-Intensified Floods,” Zoha Tunio.

  6. Pakistan Red Cross Society.


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