ISLAMABAD  -  With 7th position among world’s top ten countries vulnerable to climate change and global warming, Pakistan is all set to produce around 7,000 megawatts from coal . The climate ministry instead of opposing the energy generation from burning coal advises to use of latest techniques to minimise coal pollution.

“Yes, this is a fact, according to latest Global Climate Risk index 2017, Pakistan is placed at 7th position among world’s top ten countries vulnerable to climate change and global warming, losing $3.8 billion and 0.6 percent of the GDP”, said Minister for Climate Change Mushahidullah Khan in his written reply to the National Assembly on Friday.

He said Pakistan is among the top ten countries on the globe and is incurring 2.1 percent of GDP towards climate change. He said that the average global temperature of the earth has been increasing due to increasing concentrations of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gasses in the atmosphere since the start of the industrial era (mid-19th century).

Answering another question asked by lawmaker Suraiya Jatoi, that is it a fact that coal power plants being installed under the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) will become source of unprecedented pollution in the country, the minister avoided a direct answer.

“Coal is not considered as an environment-friendly fuel because of its emissions. However, technology which allows reduced emissions exists. CPEC includes power generation projects, which are being dealt by the Ministry of Power. Ministry of Climate Change recommends ultra critical technology for these power stations, as it is the best technology for emissions control”, Khan said in his reply.

Power projects of around 7,000MW have been scheduled under China Pakistan Economic Corridor. CPEC energy priority projects include two 660MW coal-fired power plants at Port Qasim Karachi, two 660MW coal-fired power plant, at Sahiwal, Punjab, two 330MW coal-fired power plants at Engro Thar Block II, one 330MW mine mouth lignite fired power project at Thar Block-II, Sindh, two 660MW mine mouth power plant Thar Coal Block-I, Sindh and 1,320MW coal-fired power plant, at Hub, Balochistan.

Many believe Chinese companies are coming as investors in individual capacity and are only concerned with the profits they will make over years from generating electricity and then selling it to Pakistani people. It is the duty of the government to ensure long term prosperity of the country.