ISLAMABAD -Pakistan People’s Party Vice President Senator Sherry Rehman yesterday said Islamabad should be a flagship for all brick kilns.

Addressing the Senate Standing Committee on Climate Change, the Parliamentary Leader of the PPP in the Senate said: The government had ordered that all brick kilns be converted to ‘zig-zag’ technology, a design change that makes more efficient use of fuel but no deadline for the switch has been set.”

She added, “We were told that the government will give Rs1 crore per plant, depending on the size to install the zig zag. 

The federal government made the commitment to provide them with the money and there was no talk on percentage or loan as brick kiln workers are the most vulnerable and exploited people.”

Islamabad, she said, should be a flagship for all the brick kilns getting that money and not on loan. 

“We were told very clearly that Rs20 crore will be transferred and all these will be turned to zig zag but it has still not been done,” she added while emphasising on the importance of introducing new brick kilns which will drastically cut air pollution by 70%,” the PPP leader said.

She said Pakistan is the 5th most vulnerable country to climate change, two places up from last year and 36% of Pakistan’s glaciers will melt by 2100 due to climate change, which is about 14,000 glaciers.  “This is indeed alarming and merits our urgent response as it will intensify flash flooding and monsoons in Pakistan,” she added.

Taking notice of the Islamabad Zoo lions which died, Senator Sherry Rehman said: “The lions’ cage was set on fire to counter the cats’ aggression due to which they both lost their lives and this is just the tip of the iceberg as animals are abused and caged in small spaces. 

Has Kaavan been safely transferred or not? The animal caretakers, zoo staff and Islamabad Wildlife Management Board are criminally negligent in their duties. Many other animals like ostriches and bulls have also died during their relocation from Islamabad zoo. This brutality and caging needs to be stopped.”