Extreme weather conditions: ‘Political will a must to mitigate climate change’

Experts huddle to discuss climate change issues.

Our Correspondent April 17, 2015
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif addressing the joint session of Parliament. PHOTO: PID

ISLAMABAD: Political will has the most importance role to play to cope with climate change issues facing the country, concluded experts at a seminar on Friday.

“The window of opportunity is closing, the intensity and impacts of extreme events can be reduced by adaptation,” said Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Vice-Chairman Prof Jean Pascal van Ypersele while delivering a lecture on challenges and opportunities of climate change organised by the Sustainable Development Policy Institute (SDPI) in collaboration with the Belgium Embassy at a local hotel.

He said climate change affected livelihood, water resources and food security besides causing poverty, migration and coastal flooding and it could be observed through the warming of hot days and heat waves.

“Currently, a small amount of warming is observed, but its impacts are immense, which indicates that if the warming increases, the impact will be more severe,” Ypersele said.

“With efficient use of energy and greater use of low carbon technologies, green house gases emissions can be brought to a reasonable level,” he said and added that the mitigation could result in benefiting human health.

The IUCN Global Vice-President Malik Amin Aslam Khan said that Pakistan was contributing only 0.5 per cent of global green house gases, but it was one of the most vulnerable countries to climate change patterns.

Terming recent rains unprecedented, he stressed the need for a national adaptation action plan to deal with emergency situations.

Earlier, SDPI Executive Director Dr Abid Suleri said that the SDPI was working on the climate change issue since its inception and contributed a lot on the subject.

SDPI chairman board of governors and former ambassador Shafqat Kakakhel said that Pakistan will have to act to combat climate issues.

Published in The Express Tribune, April 18th, 2015.


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