Pakistan says world needs to ‘do more’ to confront climate change

ISLAMABAD – Special Assistant to Prime Minister (SAPM) on Climate Change Malik Amin Aslam on Thursday called upon the global community to ‘do more’ on the global climate action to protect the world community from unfolding deleterious impacts of climate change.

“The world has to do more, and fast-track efforts to confront the climate change,” Malik Amin Asalm said while addressing the virtual US-led Leaders Summit on Climate hosted by the US government in Washington on April 22.

The US President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris inaugurated the event in Washington.

The United States last week invited Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Climate Change to be a distinguished speaker at the virtual Leaders Summit on Climate being hosted by the US President Joe Biden.

The US president had invited 41 world leaders including from Pakistan, India, China and Bangladesh, to the summit.

The Leaders Summit on Climate aims to underscore the urgency and the economic benefits of stronger climate action. It will be a key milestone on the road to the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26) this November in Glasgow.

Addressing the summit, Malik Amin Aslam said that the earth’s temperature continued to rise, with 2020 being one of the three warmest years on record, as extreme weather events combined with the COVID-19 pandemic, impacting millions in many ways.

He appreciated the US government for convening the Climate Summit at a time when the world was passing through a critical time in the climate negotiation processes to deal with the climate emergency.

“It is a high time the world shows seriousness by delivering real climate action on the ground and not put talks,” Malik Amin Aslam stressed during his address.

He highlighted that Pakistan was striving to be a part of the solution, through nature-based initiatives, and was committed not to add to the problem of climate change.

“The world needs to ‘do more’ by showing real climate action and delivering climate finance,” Malik Amin Aslam said. He suggested three types of climate finances to be delivered that include committed finance of $100 billion per year, adaptation finance for impacted countries like Pakistan and transition finance for helping countries shift to clean energy. 

Without a clear delivery on climate finance there would be no deal at Glasgow COP,” Malik Amin Aslam cautioned. He stressed that Pakistan believed in a cooperative, collaborative and inclusive climate negotiations process.

Highlighting the country’s vulnerability case, he told the participants from 41 countries that “Pakistan accounts for less than one percent of the total heat-trapping global carbon emissions, yet it is ranked amongst the most climate-vulnerable countries and continuously smacked by the climate change-caused disasters.”

Elaborating about adverse impacts on Pakistan, Malik Amin Aslam said the glaciers in the country’s north were melting fast and arid regions were heating up so intensely that many of the areas were fast becoming uninhabitable. On the other hand, the coastal areas in the country’s south were badly affected due to sea-level rise and frequent and intense cyclonic activities, he said.

“In recent years, the country has faced intensifying bouts of heat waves, particularly in urban areas resulting in ever-growing mortality and hospitalisation of thousands of the people,” he added.

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