EU envoy says Pakistan doing well in climate change, environmental issues; supports multilateral approach; Amin Aslam spells out govt priorities
BY ANSAR M BHATTI
ISLAMABAD, SEPT 19 (DNA): Ambassador-designate of the European Union, Androulla Kaminara has said: “The EU remains committed to the Paris Agreement on climate change and its full implementation while progressing steadily with the finalization of the measures to reduce emissions by at least 40% by 2030.
She said climate change does not affect all countries in the same way and of course not all countries are responsible for climate change crisis.
“It has been proved that in already stressed societies climate change multiplies their woes. I have seen myself climate change affecting badly various countries”.
She made these remarks while speaking on the occasion of Climate Change Diplomacy Day.
The European Union and WWF-Pakistan on Sunday joined hands to promote action on climate change by celebrating Climate Diplomacy Day in Islamabad.
The event brought together people from diverse backgrounds to become part of the exchanges taking place worldwide in the crucial reflection on how to explore the opportunities arising through the irreversible transition to low carbon economies while ensuring equitable access to sustainable development.
Malik Amin Aslam Prime Minister Adviser on Climate Change was the chief guest while members of civil society and diplomatic corps participated in the event in large numbers.
The event kicked off with the participants cycling from the Pakistan National Council of the Arts (PNCA) on a designated route as a symbolic gesture to raise awareness to curtail the growth of greenhouse emissions by promoting eco-friendly modes of transportation.
The event then moved on to a screening of documentary followed by a debate competition among students of various Islamabad schools. Student of Islamabad Model College for Girls Saleha Ahmed won the debate competition.
The EU ambassador further said the objective of this sustained engagement was for the EU to raise global climate ambition together with its partners, in particular those the most exposed to the negative side effects of climate change.
The ambassador said the EU always supports multilateral solutions as they are much more effective especially to deal with issues such as climate change.
Ms. Androulla Kaminara further said Climate change requires collective action and the EU remains committed to continue working hand in hand with Pakistan, listed amongst the most vulnerable countries despite the low level of its global carbon emissions, she added.
She said the EU has earmarked 180 million euros for various climate change related projects in Pakistan. She also pin-pointed areas in which the EU plans to help Pakistan in order to overcome its climate change and environment related issues.
“We have a program which is dealing with energy resources management in the sugar industry. Industry project relates to dairy and horticulture field while the third project deals with environmental standard application for SMEs in Pakistan”.
She said the EU also plans to undertake a project in Baluchistan in order to help government exploit all available resources.
Prime Minister Adviser on climate change Malik Amin Aslam spelled out government priorities in climate change and environmental related issues adding the government planned to ban plastic bags all over Pakistan.
He said the ban was going on well in Islamabad and thanked people of twin cities for extending full cooperation to government on this particular issue.
He said the PTI govt led by Prime Minister Imran Khan was committed to a greener Pakistan and plantation of billion trees was a clear manifestation of govt strong resolve in this regard.
Rab Nawaz of WWF-Pakistan, stressed the importance of promoting a common worldwide understanding of the need for action to mitigate climate change, “No matter how people perceive climate change, the phenomenon is real – we are experiencing an array of environmental shifts, such as infrequent weather events, untimely glacial melt, glacial lake outbursts floods (GLOFs) and changes in animal and bird migration patterns, highlighting irrefutable linkages to climate change taking place in full effect.”=DNA