Plan to tackle climate change

Bahrain has reiterated its commitment to continue upgrading its health system to be able to confront any potential impact of climate change.

This is part of steps being taken to play an active role in tackling climate challenges and further developing its health system to overcome future crises.

The Health Ministry and the Supreme Council for the Environment (SCE) highlighted the drive which reflects keenness to protect the health of the people.

The announcement is in line with Bahrain’s commitment to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change and the Paris Agreement.

It is also in response to the call of the UK Presidency of the 26th UN Climate Change Conference (COP26) to adopt initiatives aimed to build a resilient and environmentally sustainable health system.

Health Minister Faeqa Al Saleh and special envoy for climate affairs and SCE chief executive Dr Mohammed bin Mubarak bin Daina affirmed Bahrain’s commitment to upgrade its health system and achieve progress on the following points:

Study of sea level rise: It could affect social, political and economic agendas in Bahrain. It aims to continuously study the level of threat to Bahrain due to coastal flooding caused by sea level rise. It would cover four stages.

Assessing flood risks from sea level rise; reviewing the available scientific evidence and data on sea level rise, and providing a preliminary evaluation of land and assets at risk, including health infrastructure in Bahrain.

Assessing coastal flood hazards. This would require an exhaustive study into the sources of flood risks associated with sea level rise and storms.

A thorough assessment of the potential impact of sea level rise on key national infrastructure and assets, including health care centres and hospitals.

Developing a viable contingency strategy to mitigate detrimental impact and exploring options to be considered to protect Bahrain’s healthcare infrastructure.

The national afforestation plan: Thermal satellite images of Bahrain were taken to determine the hot areas, and establish a list of trees and plants which can endure Bahrain’s heat, without requiring much water or affecting the infrastructure.

A pilot programme was carried out to assess the impact of afforestation, on one of the main roads, in addition to some tourist areas, central markets and residential zones. It will be further expanded to include the type and percentage of green spaces.

Building permits will also be reviewed to include landscaping. Lowering the temperature will contribute to reducing heat stress-related illnesses and increasing the quality of well-being in Bahrain.

National Adaptation Investment Plan (NAIP): Bahrain’s national adaptation planning efforts aim to enhance the capacity to face the risks of climate change and tackle urgent needs resulting from climatic volatility. Improving food and water security would also play a vital role in bettering people’s health.




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