$35 Million project to improve water management and agriculture.

The board of Green Climate Fund (GCF) on Sunday approved financing of $35 million for a project of the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) of the United Nations to transform the Indus River Basin by improving agriculture and water management to make the vital food-producing region more resilient to climate change.

In the Indus River Basin, agriculture employs nearly 26 per cent of Pakistan’s labour force and produces more than 90pc of the country’s agriculture outputs. How­ever, extended droughts and floods have affected millions of people in recent years. Such events are to be seen in the future of Pakistan as a result of climate change. As temperatures continue to rise and precipitation patterns continue to change, water will become increasingly scarce and difficult for farmers to utilize, jeopardizing the food security and livelihoods of Indus Basin farmers, as well as overall food security in Pakistan.

Mainly the project is worth $47m and stands directly to benefit 1.3m people. The provincial government of Punjab and Sindh have promised to $12.7m to finance the project by FAO.

“This new FAO project, thanks to support from the GCF and the government, will help shift Pakistan and its Indus Basin agriculture from a current situation of high vulnerability toward an alternative paradigm wherein better information, water management and farming practices will significantly increase resilience to climate change,” said Mina Dowlatchahi, FAO representative in Pakistan