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Jordan can lead the way to regional approach to reverse climate change

Nov 17,2018 - Last updated at Nov 17,2018

It is safe and reasonable to conclude that the unusual weather conditions which Jordan has been experiencing, especially this year, often accompanied by flashfloods and causing death and destruction, is attributable to climate change affecting not only Jordan, but everywhere in the world.

Call it what you like, global warming or climate change, it  is now a global crisis that countries can no longer ignore with impunity and must take it more seriously than ever before, having experienced its dire consequences in various forms, including floods, out-of-control forest fires and, I dare say, earthquakes and volcanoes.

The human and material cost is incalculable for those who care to measure them. That said, Jordan on its own cannot do much but can still bare its share of the responsibility to stop, or better still, reverse climate change by adopting and implementing a series of policies and measures that could be antidotes to global warming, including a drastic reduction in the use of fossil fuels and replacing it with clean energy.

The UN has repeatedly called on nations to incorporate antidote measures to global warming in their economic strategies. This international uprising has taken the form of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). In fact, Jordan has made great strides in that direction, but perhaps not enough. There is a lot more that can be done, starting by reducing the number of cars with engines that use conventional fossil fuels. Other than that, there is not much that Jordan can do alone, being a relatively small country with a small economy and a small population.

What is urgently needed is a regional approach. Jordan may take the extra step by promoting this regional approach together with other regional countries which have also experienced similar maverick weather conditions of late. A regional meeting for this purpose could be, therefore, a step in the right direction.

Admittedly, with the politics of the Middle East being what they are, perhaps not much can be expected in terms of regional cooperation or coordination. But there is no harm in trying. Jordan has state authorities that sponsor environmental protection across the board. The country has also the Economic and Social Council, which can spearhead such a regional approach having invested heavily in examining its multidimensional contours. The power of persuasion amidst regional political turmoil does not have much chance to bear fruit but interested Middle East countries must continue to try to forge a regional approach to climate change in order to save the Middle East and its peoples from the wrath of global warming.

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