Rawalpindi-State Minister for Climate Change Zartaj Gul Wazir on Monday said that pollution is one of the main issues that PTI led federal government aims to tackle through initiatives like the Clean and Green Pakistan. The government has launched the 10 Billion Trees Tsunami project on the patron of the Billion Trees Project of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa which would play a vital role in tackling climate change issues in Pakistan. The ‘Clean Green Pakistan Movement’ was launched by the Prime Minister of Pakistan Imran Khan in October 2018 and Ministry of Climate Change is coordinating its implementation with all the provinces including Azad Jammu Kashmir and Gilgit Baltistan. Addressing the business community at Rawalpindi Chamber of Commerce and Industry (RCCI) she said that the goal of a clean Pakistan can only be achieved through public private partnership and chamber of commerce can play a vital role in bridging the gap between government and private sector. She lauded RCCI’s efforts in promoting business activities in the region and also appreciated its key initiatives under Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) including the plantation of 50,000 tree samplings, RCCI Dasterkhawan and medical clinic.

The minister welcomed RCCI’s key suggestion for better environment like inspection of commercial and private vehicles, identification of long survival trees along with area climate, ownership, curriculum, clean drinking water and rain water conservation.

Earlier President RCCI Malik Shahid Saleem in his welcome address said that traders are ready to join the government in its efforts to address the climate change through various steps including tree plantation, ban on plastic bags and use of renewable energy. RCCI through its industry-academia linkage program will initiate awareness campaigns and will organize seminars and workshops to make Pakistan greener, he further added. He informed that Pakistan is seventh in the list of ten countries which have been badly affected by the climate change.

The remedy to mitigate the impact of climate change undoubtedly lies in planting more and more trees. About 6 to 10 degree centigrade temperature can be reduced in different parts of the country by planting trees following the international concept of urban forestry, he added. Later RCCI Minister State Zartaj Gul Wazir planted a tree (Platanus) at the Chamber lawn to mark the 50,000 number under its plantation drive.