LAHORE/ KARACHI/ ISLAMABAD -  Like others parts of the world, the World Environment Day was marked on Thursday across the country with the theme “Raise your voice, not the sea level.”
A number of seminars and walks were held to mark the day and create awareness among the masses regarding environment.
In Lahore, a seminar was jointly organised by the Environment Protection Department (EPD) Punjab and College of Earth and Environmental Science (CEES) Punjab University. Speakers at the seminar stressed the need for every individual’s participation to save the environment. Provincial Minister for Environment Col (r) Shuja Khanzada was the chief guest on this occasion while Secretary Environment Punjab Anwar Rasheed and Punjab University Vice Chancellor Mujahid Kamran were the guests of honours.
Faculty members and large number of students were also present on this occasion. Prof Dr Firdoos told the participants about the importance of the current theme of Environment Day. Students of CEES presented three documentaries focusing on the prevailing environmental changes and narrated the aftereffects of rapid changes of environment on our earth.
Minister Environment Col (R) Shuja Khanzada said that presently faced environmental challenges should be dealt on war footing basis besides such seminars and events should be held on regular basis with collaboration of public and private sectors.
PU VC Dr Mujahid Kamran said the environment was being damaged because of increase in population. He said that as the population increases, the cities would have to be widened at the cost of trees and arable land near cities. He said that the incumbent PU administration had the vision of saving environment and had planted 30,000 trees in the last 6 years. He said that awareness must be created to protect environment.
Meanwhile, the Lahore Waste Management Company in collaboration with Parks & Horticulture Authority (PHA) marked the day and held two separate activities at Shaukat Khanum Chowk and other at Jallo Park. Each activity was comprised awareness walk, resolution signing, setting up of camps, deployment of Litter Wardens at traffic signals, door stepping, public briefing, leafleting and operation cleanup in the surrounding locality.
Awareness walk at Shaukat Khanum Chowk was led by PHA Director General Shakeel Ahmad, Communication Specialist OzPak Bekar Kucubas and Manager Communication LWMC Raza Khan. Zonal Director PHA Tehseen, Deputy Director Public Relations PHA Mudasir Ejaz, Managers Operation Suhail Anwar Malik, Manager Planning Asif Iqbal, Deputy Manager Shafqat Rasool, Assistant Managers Asad Ahmad, Umair Khan, Rehman Malik, representatives of Turkish company OzPak and a large number of students from University of the Punjab, Lahore College for Women University, KIPS School System and other educational institutions also accompanied the campaign.
Speaking at a seminar on “Climate Change and Rising Sea Level: Impact on Coastal Pakistan” held at the Institute of Environmental Studies, University of Karachi the speakers said: “World Environment Day is the opportunity for everyone to realize not only the responsibility to care for the Earth and to become agents of change. Thus this day is an excellent opportunity to raise a call for solidarity with the global earth.
Environmental issues included soil erosion, pesticide misuse, deforestation, desertification, urban pollution, water logging, ground water contamination, fresh and sea water pollution etc.”
Prof Dr Tariq Masood Ali Khan spoke about the importance of celebration of environment day. He said: “There are number of serious environmental problems facing by developing countries, which have great ecological concern. These environmental issues are soil erosion, pesticide misuse, deforestation, desertification, urban pollution, water logging, ground water contamination, fresh and sea water pollution etc.”