Experts call for concrete actions on climate change in Pakistan

Sep 24, 2014

Climate Summit Pakistan looks at risks and vulnerabilities

In a prequel to the Global Climate Change Summit hosted by the UN Secretary-General on Tuesday in New York, experts gathered in Islamabad for the Climate Summit Pakistan on Monday. The event brought together representatives of academia, international organizations, government, the private sector and civil society to discuss Pakistan’s vulnerability to climate change and to some of its extreme manifestations like floods and droughts.

Moderated by TV anchors Faisal Rehman and Shabnam Riaz, the summit focused on six areas that directly affect the country: agriculture, cities, energy, funding and resilience, pollutants and water. 

Following the summit, a group of young students from Saya School hosted an art exhibition titled "Pakistani Youth Voices for Climate Change Action" and planted olive trees in COMSATS’ park.

Mr. Timo Pakkala, United Nations Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative in Pakistan emphasised that the main objective of the climate change summit is to ensure that concerns about climate change in Pakistan are addressed both nationally and internationally. Mr. Pakkala urged policymakers and political leaders to take concrete and immediate actions to mitigate the effects of climate change, pointing out that investments in water conservation, renewable energy, agriculture, water storage and reforestation are vital to sustainable development.

Pakistan is a classic example of a developing country that is highly vulnerable to the effects of climate change, but has done little to contribute to the problem. Ranked 16 of 170 counties in a recent Climate Change Vulnerability Index, Pakistan is located in region where projected temperature increase is likely to be higher than the global average. It is estimated that Pakistan will need US$ 7-14 billion to adequately adapt to the effects of climate change.

The nation is a signatory to major environmental conventions and protocols and UNDP supports the government through its climate change adaptation and mitigation projects. The Climate Summit Pakistan was organized by the COMSATS Centre for Climate Research & Development and the United Nations in Pakistan. 

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