ISLAMABAD: Minister of Climate Change Zahid Hamid has boasted that Pakistan is setting up world’s largest solar park of 1,000 megawatts as part of its plan to promote production of renewable energy in the country.
“Pakistan has also enacted the National Energy Efficiency and Conservation Act 2016 to promote effective conservation and efficient use of energy,” he said while addressing a press conference on Tuesday.
The minister led a Pakistani delegation for participation in the COP22 Conference in Morocco recently, which provided an opportunity to highlight the significant achievements made to address the impact of climate change.
Hamid said the world community was informed that Pakistan’s contribution to global warming was minimal as “we emit less than 1% of the annual global greenhouse gas emissions. Yet we are ranked amongst the top 10 countries that are most vulnerable to climate change.”
The world community was also informed that Pakistan faced several major risks pertaining to climate change including glacier melting, variable monsoons, recurrent floods, rise in sea levels, higher average temperatures and higher frequency of droughts.
Millions of people had been affected and a colossal damage was caused on a recurring basis, he said.
“These threats pose major survival concerns for Pakistan, particularly in relation to water security, food security and energy security,” Hamid said, adding these threats also had enormous adverse consequences for all socio-economic sectors, limiting the country’s ability to promote sustainable growth and development.
The minister emphasised that Pakistan as a responsible member of the global community had taken substantial steps, especially during 2016, to tackle the threat of climate change.
He termed the launch of Rs2-billion Prime Minister’s Green Pakistan Programme, which would be implemented across the country, a historic initiative. “This will establish a high-level, policymaking Pakistan Climate Change Council along with Pakistan Climate Change Authority.”
The minister added Pakistan had developed the National Sustainable Development Strategy and had perhaps become the first country in the world whose National Assembly passed a unanimous resolution adopting the SDGs as its own national development agenda.
Published in The Express Tribune, November 30th, 2016.