In a virtual meeting with the Group of Friends on Sustainable Energy, Pakistan’s UN Ambassador Munir Akram announced that Pakistan seeks to have at least 30 percent electric vehicle by 2030.
Group of Friends on Sustainable Energy is a 32 nation group committed to a transition from fossil fuel-based energy to renewable and green energy.
Pakistan is a member of and co-chairs the group along with Denmark and Norway.
Munir Akram expressed concern in the meeting, saying that most developing nations may fail to fulfill their commitments to move towards environmentally friendly modes of creating energy if they are not helped.
He said that developing nations need to be helped in regards to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“If developing countries are destitute, if there are humanitarian disasters, if we are unable to recover from Covid, I think all other actions for many developing countries will become irrelevant,” he said. “So urgent and immediate actions are needed.”
Read more: We will lose the climate change race while stimulating economy amid a pandemic
Munir further said that major contributors of greenhouse gases must curb their emissions to fulfill their commitments to creating a healthy and clean environment for everyone.
“There are positive indications I agree, but I believe that these should be made much clearer as we go forward, especially from the biggest country, the United States,” he said. “We look forward to what the new US administration will have to say in the coming months.”
Pakistan’s climate plan
He urged nations with the largest economies to fulfill their promise of a hundred billion annual commitment for climate finance.
He said Pakistan was one of the most vulnerable nations in terms of climate impact but is also one of the smallest contributors to carbon and greenhouse gases in the world.
Read more: Let Us Talk About Climate Change, Shall We?
“We have an extensive and ambitious plan, both on adaptation, mitigation,” he said.
"Empowering forest communities with alternative and efficient energy sources and energy-saving cooking stoves for meeting daily household cooking and heating needs can significantly help cut soaring pressure on the country’s forest resources."
State Minister @zartajgulwazir . pic.twitter.com/IrPOvA5upU
— Ministry of Climate Change, Govt of Pakistan (@ClimateChangePK) December 3, 2020
“We are also a champion on financing investment in renewable energy, and we look forward to playing that role as well,” he added.
What are regions in Pakistan most vulnerable?
According to a study by Sadia Mariam Malik, Haroon Awan & Niazullah Khan titled ‘Mapping vulnerability to climate change and its repercussions on human health in Pakistan’ Balochistan is the most vulnerable region with high sensitivity and low adaptive capacity, followed by low-intensity Punjab (mostly consisting of South Punjab) and Cotton/Wheat Sindh.
The health risks that each of these regions faces depend upon the threat they face from climate change. Greater incidence of flooding, which may occur due to climate variability, poses the risk of diarrhea and gastroenteritis; skin and eye Infections; acute respiratory infections; and malaria.
Read more: Climate Change: Is Pakistan doing enough?
Exposure to drought poses potential health risks in food insecurity and malnutrition, anemia, night blindness, and scurvy. Temperature increases pose health risks of heatstroke, malaria, dengue, respiratory diseases, and cardiovascular diseases.
The study concludes that geographical zones that are more exposed to climate change in ecological and geographic terms- such as Balochistan, Low-Intensity Punjab, and Cotton-Wheat Sindh -also happen to be the most deprived regions in Pakistan in terms of socio-economic indicators, suggesting that the government needs to direct its efforts to the socio-economic uplift of these lagging regions to reduce their vulnerability to the adverse effects of climate change.
GVS News Desk