ISLAMABAD - Adviser to Prime Minister on Climate Change Malik Amin Aslam on Thursday said that Pakistan has spent four billion dollars for climate change and it was identified as the eighth most affected climate change country.

Addressing a Press conference, the Adviser informed that the international reports released at the 24th Conference of Parties (COP-24) held in Katowice, Poland under United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) revealed the country’s vulnerability and endurance through the worldwide phenomenon of environmental degradation despite its least share in the overall pollution of the world for the last two decades.

He said that Pakistan has been frequently undergoing climate change phenomenon with increased intensity and frequency of natural disasters though the country has not been the perpetrator and contributor to the global environmental degradation yet playing leadership in steering endeavours to cope with the issue. The Minister said that the delegation presented Pakistan’s successful Billion Tree Project before the world, adding, “We apprised the international community that we have planted one billion trees in five years at a cost of Rs 14 billion hence ensuring beyond our Nationally Determined Commitments (NDCs) pledged under Paris Agreement of 2015.

Pakistan, he said was not among those countries responsible to take serious initiatives to mitigate the climate change risk rather was a sufferer of global impact.

He said that, “We are one of those nations who are taking lead role in making efforts to cope with the serious global environmental challenge.” He said that Pakistan’s delegation was the smallest in the 24th conference of Parties (COP-24) held in Katowice, Poland with 4 members each from the ministry of Climate Change and Foreign Office.

He said that the COP was astonished to know that Prime Minister Imran Khan had due consideration of climate change in his manifesto and was the only Head of State in the world to discuss environmental degradation in his maiden speech after winning the elections.

As a result of its effective participation and high-level political leadership, Pakistan has been elected as the ‘Vice President and Rapporteur’ of the Conference of Parties (COP) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), which is second highest position at the UN Climate Convention,” he said.

He further said that Pakistan for the first time secured position in five other bodies including the Executive Board of Clean Development Mechanism (CDM), Standing Committee on Finance (SCF), Adaptation Committee (AC), Consultative Group of Experts (CGE), and Technology Executive Committee (TEC).

Malik Amin Aslam said that the negotiations remained intact within the country’s set agenda and priorities during various sessions, conciliations and side events and agreed on the Rule Book pledged under Paris Accord 2015 of COP-21.

He said that besides the conference, Pakistan participated in 10 side events and also chaired three out of the total and hence launched Inter-governmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Report, Climate Smart Agriculture Report and Eco-system based Adaptation initiative.