Green CPEC to play key role in tackling climate change

Senator says Pakistan’s dependence on imported gas making situation worse


June 05, 2022
Over 37% of installed capacity of the CPEC power projects, or 1,980 megawatts, is out of order due to non-payment of dues to Chinese investors. PHOTO: FILE

ISLAMABAD:

As the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) advances further, it can play an important role in the country’s efforts to mitigate climate change effects, said Pakistani experts.

During a two-day event named “Green China-Pakistan Economic Corridor Alliance” and a workshop to mobilise renewable energy investment for sustainable development held by the Sustainable Development Policy Institute (SDPI) and Pakistan-China Institute, experts and officials discussed CPEC and green development in Pakistan.

Senator Seemi Ezdi, Chairperson of upper house’s committee on climate change, said Pakistan is the eighth most vulnerable country to climate change, and the country’s dependence on imported gas is making the situation worse.

She added that CPEC is playing an important role in introducing renewable energy in the country, which will help in its efforts to mitigate the impact of climate change besides meeting its energy demand.

Hina Aslam, head of the China Study Centre at the SDPI, said that CPEC helps Pakistan through job creation, income growth, infrastructure upgrading, skill development, education and more.

“China is leading the transition in clean energy. The concept of eco-civilisation is one of the major drivers of this transition that could be brought into CPEC. And if CPEC can go green, it can bring an enormous positive showcase for the other BRI countries as well,” she added.

The experts recalled the time when the country was facing up to 10 hours of power outages a day due to the lack of electricity, and CPEC addressed the problem through coal-fired power plants, which helped the country facilitate its industrial production.

It was noted that CPEC coal plants are using supercritical technology, enabling them to ensure the emissions meet the local and world standards.

Muhammad Ali Qureshi, an energy expert, told Xinhua that climate change is one of the most pressing issues, and CPEC can help the country win its battle against climate change through investment in the renewable sector and other measures.

The article originally appeared on the China Economic Net

Published in The Express Tribune, June 5th, 2022.

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