Islamabad: The Minister of Climate Change while speaking on this occasion said that the government aimed to strengthen Pakistan’s research capacity in climate change, and especially the country’s premier climate research institute, the Global Change Impact Studies Centre (GCISC).
“We hope to raise this Centre to international standards. We would like Pakistan to benefit from international expertise and other countries to benefit from our experience and knowledge”.
He further added during the regime of present government , Pakistan has taken a number of important steps towards climate friendly development including ratification of Paris agreement ,passing of climate change act, international sustainable development agenda has been adopted as our national agenda, passing of National Forest Policy by the Council of Common Interests.
He also highlighted that Green Pakistan program has been initiated to preserve forestry and wildlife in Pakistan and Astola Island has been declared as Marine Protected Area. He approved a proposal for the capacity building of Global Change Impact Centre. The total budget of the proposal is Rs.791 million, of which Rs.60 millions have already been released.
He also highlighted that a total of 300 abstracts of papers were received for the conference, of which 140 were selected for presentation. These will provide valuable input for other researchers as well as government officials, NGO’s think tanks and faculty members and students. We have also taken other actions besides the conference including inviting high quality organized training workshops and provided guidance for future research. some of them are present at the conference, and are willing to enter into long term relationship with the center.
He further informed we have started discussions with universities, through Higher Education Commission and with provinces to start research and educational programs on climate change. Steps are being taken to establish provincial climate change centers as well. he further informed that taking benefit from this major gatherings of climate researchers, we will launch Pakistan Society for Climate Change.
Dr. Tariq Banuri, Executive Director GCISC said that the conference presents an opportunity for stakeholders to deliberate on Pakistan’s development in the context of climate change. He said this three-day event will provide an initial mapping efforts to alleviate the impacts of climate change, an assessment of knowledge and capacity needs and priorities that better reflect the Pakistani development context, and a stimulating environment with the intention to yield innovative ideas and grounds for implementation. Dr. Banuri further said that the conference seeks to highlight the need for improved climate-related research and information for Pakistan, as well as to strengthen the science-policy interface.
The conference was also addressed by leading national and international experts, including Professor Steve Burian (USA), Dr. Tom Downing (UK), Dr. Youba Sokona (Mali), and Dr. Adil Najam, former Vice Chancellor of LUMS.
Pakistan is the major victims of the adverse impacts of changing climate. There is an urgent need for reliable research in this field to support policy makers, inform the public and provide early warning.
In response to this need, GCISC with other partner organizations is organizing the first international conference on Climate Change in Pakistan
More than 140 scientists from all over the world will present their latest research findings. In addition, more than 200 stakeholders from various groups (government, business, civil society, media, law, parliamentarians and effected communities) have registered for the conference to share their views and experiences.