ISLAMABAD     -  A number of diplomatic missions yesterday launched a new initiative – DiploGreen. DiploGreen is a community-wide collaboration led by Canada, France, Germany, Japan, the Netherlands, the UK and the United States, with an aim to raise environmental awareness, while maintaining a clean and green Diplomatic Enclave in Islamabad.

DiploGreen’s launch event – a clean-up and recycling campaign – also supports Islamabad’s plastic-free campaign, recently announced by the Ministry of Climate Change.

As a first effort under this initiative, employees and volunteers from the Canadian, French, German, Japanese, Dutch, UK and US Missions, joined by numerous other representatives from the diplomatic community, led a two-hour recycling drive and clean-up across the Diplomatic Enclave on the morning of August 28th.

The clean-up and recycling drive was followed by a gathering at the Canadian High Commission, to continue the conversation about environmental awareness at the local, national, and global levels. The gathering also gave participating diplomatic missions, as well as businesses and organisations engaged with the diplomatic community, the opportunity to discuss their respective sustainability pledges in favour of a healthier environment. Under these pledges, new environmental measures may include banning single-use plastics, starting a recycling program, committing to reduce energy or water usage, or supporting awareness campaigns. Canadian High Commissioner to Pakistan, Wendy Gilmour, said: “I am delighted to announce the launch of DiploGreen, in collaboration with embassies/high commissions of France, Germany, the Netherlands, Japan, the UK and the US. Our goal is to raise awareness about the environment. Today, the Diplomatic community came together to clean and recycle our way to a healthier environment for us all.”

Glimour added: “We are all impacted by environmental issues. It is imperative that we continue to work together across geographic and political boundaries to protect our natural surroundings.”