Pedalling climate diplomacy for action vital to tackling global climate risk – Malik Amin Aslam

Prime Minister’s Advisor on Climate Change, Malik Amin Aslam said that pedalling climate diplomacy for climate action is a vital tool to tackling common global climate risk affecting the rich and poor countries.

“The world leaders must come forward and join hand in hand to help each other to boost their resilience against unfolding climate change-caused disasters, particularly floods, forest fires and warming-triggered diseases such as dengue,” he during his keynote address to the participants of European Union’s Climate Diplomacy Day event held at the Pakistan National Council of Arts on Sunday.

The event was jointly organised by the Ministry of Climate Change, World Wide Fund for Nature – Pakistan and European Union’s Mission to Pakistan.

Malik Amin Aslam highlighted that Pakistan annually faces economic damages between USD 6-14 billion solely due to deteriorating climate changes-triggered disasters, particularly floods, sea intrusion, declining rainfall patterns and human diseases.

Melting of glaciers in the northern regions of Pakistan could disturb the biodiversity of the entire country and adversely influence climate conditions, he added.

“The present Prime Minister’s Imran Khan’s government is fully abreast of the mounting climate change challenges facing Pakistan and is taking adequate measures to deal with them utilising its own resources,” The advisor on climate change Malik Amin Aslam informed the packed auditorium hall of the Pakistan National Council of Arts, Islamabad.

Androulla Kaminara, Ambassador-Designate of the European Union (EU) to Pakistan said during address to the audience that The EU continues to reaffirm its steadfast commitment to the Paris Agreement as the essential multilateral framework governing global action to dealing with climate change.

“While the EU is on track to exceed its 2020 target for reducing greenhouse gas emissions, it is determined to help raise global ambition and lead the way on accelerated climate action on all fronts,” she told the participants.

She emphasised that the youth climate movement is a sign of the growing awareness in our societies that climate change is a reality already that requires action today.

Androulla Kaminara pledged that the EU would continue engaging with partners, including Pakistan, to address the common challenge of climate change through a multilateral approach. Particularly since Pakistan is ranked as the seventh country most venerable to climate change in the world.

Rab Nawaz, Senior Director Programmes, WWF-Pakistan said that climate change is a bitter reality that poses a greater threat to our present and future generations.
Pakistan is at risk of climate related natural hazards as witnessed by widespread rains, super floods, frequent heatwaves and temperature rise and incidences of coastal flooding and sea intrusion.

he said that nature-based solutions such as large-scale plantation drives, protection of existing forests, promotion of renewable energy and conservation of water resources should be adopted to address this grave challenge.

Rab Nawaz of WWF – Pakistan also emphasised the need for unprecedented action to tackle the issue of climate change at the local, regional and global levels.

He appreciated the activism of youth and civil society organizations in recent Climate March events held in different cities all over Pakistan and stressed that the youth, future guardian of this planet, should also come forward and act to reverse the climate change.

WWF’s Rab Nawaz said further that ‘it does shows that all business activities depend on the nature. Planet Earth provides societies with all the resources we need including clean air and water, food, soil, a benign climate and productive seas. But the global loss of nature is making the planet less stable and is already costing national economies trillions of dollars every year’.

For the fourth year, the European Union Delegation to Pakistan and WWF-Pakistan jointly
commemorated Climate Diplomacy Day in Islamabad on Sunday to highlight the adverse impacts of climate change and seek positive actions.

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 documentary screening – Our Planet, Our Business – which shed light on the role of businesses in building a sustainable future.

Aiming to encourage informed debate on climate change, the event brought together people from diverse backgrounds to become part of the exchanges taking place worldwide. The event also encourages exploration of opportunities and a transition to low carbon economies while ensuring equitable access to sustainable development.

To discuss the impacts of climate change and bring forth practical solutions, a speech competition was held on the theme ‘Youth for Climate Action’ amongst students. A total of 30 youngsters from 10 private and government colleges and universities, in the 14 to 22 years age group, participated in the competition.

The best young speaker received a cash prize of PKR 25,000 and an acknowledgement certificate by the chief guest. At conclusion of the event, all participants signed a pledge wall and showed their concerns about the threats of climate change.
This demonstrated a commitment to fight the challenge of climate change challenge by planting more trees, conserving water, reducing individual carbon footprints and changing lifestyles.

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