RIYADH, Oct 25 (APP): Prime Minister Imran Khan on Monday said that with 10% of countries responsible for 80% of the world carbon emissions, there was a need for collective efforts for taking this challenge more seriously.
“I hope that we will collectively take this challenge more seriously,” Imran Khan said while addressing the launch of the Middle East Green Initiative (MGI) Summit hosted by Saudi Arabia.
The Prime Minister said that Pakistan unfortunately, being among the 10 most vulnerable countries, had faced 150 harsh weather events during the last ten years with an economic impact of over US $ 3.8 billion.
The economic cost of climate change to be faced by Pakistan in the coming years has been estimated at US $ 6 to 14 billion, he added.
Besides Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz, the Summit was addressed by leaders and representatives of various countries including Kuwait, Algeria, UK, Greece, Jordan, Russia, Morroco, Qatar, Iraq, Yemen.
The Prime Minister in his address highlighted the various meares taken by his government including the project of 10 Billion Trees to mitigate the effects of climate change.
Prime Minister Imran Khan while sharing Pakistan’s experience and measures taken to tackle the challenge of climate change said that with the target of 10 billion trees, the present government has so far planted 2.5 billion trees.
He said that with 30% of power generation already converted to green energy, Pakistan will shift 60% of its power on green energy by 2030.
The Prime Minister said that the government had shelved 2400 Mega Watts of coal based power projects, replacing with 3700 MW of hydro electricity projects.
He further said that the government has now made commitment of not using coal for power generation. However, he added that local coal be used for power generation through gasification.
The Prime Minister said that the present government was investing in climate change projects including the plantation of one billion mangroves by 2023, as these plants absorb thr highest amount of carbon omissions.
He said during the Covid-19 pandemic, the government increased 50% national parks, which created 85000 jobs, adding, more 200, 000 jobs will be created in this field.
The Prime Minister said that with the wetlands, which recharge the ground water being preserved in the country, the World Bank has appreciated Pakistan for the use of 44% of financing in climate change projects.
He also mentioned the issuance of US $ 500 million Green Bonds by Pakistan for clean energy projects and said Blue and Nature Bonds will also be issued.
The Prime Minister termed the issue of climate change as biggest one in the world, which was badly affecting the weather system and causing floods in various regions.
He said the people living in the countries around Himalyas and Karakuram ranges including Pakistan, India, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan were badly affected by the fast melting of glaciers and could face severe water problems in future.
The Prime Minister thanked Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman bin Abdulaziz for hosting the MGI Summit on the important subject.