ISLAMABAD: Pakistan has unmatched potential for power generation through renewable resources like wind and solar energy.

This was stated by experts at a workshop organised by the Ministry of Climate Change in collaboration with the World Wildlife Fund (WWF-Pakistan) on Friday to launch the ‘Preparation of Pakistan’s Third National Communication (TNC)’ under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).

During his opening statement, WWF-Pakistan Director General Hammad Naqi Khan said: “In the last few months alone, we have witnessed heat waves, forest fires, glacial lake outburst floods (GLOFs) and altered rainfall patterns – all manifestations of climate change.”

He said it was important that this exercise was done to revisit policies and strategies, identify gaps and try to plug them to mitigate and adapt to the present realities.

Representatives from the main implementing partners, including Global Change Impact Study Centre, National Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority, Pakistan Council for Renewable Energy Technologies and WWF-Pakistan gave an overview of their planned activities under seven thematic working groups of the TNC.

Additional Secretary, Ministry of Climate Change, Joudat Ayaz said if steps were not taken to control climate change, Pakistan’s coastline would be somewhere between Karachi and Hyderabad by 2100, resulting in environmental crises and massive internal migration.

He said Pakistan had the potential to produce 40,000 megawatts (MWs) of wind energy at Gharo Sindh.

Wind alone can meet the energy needs whereas solar power alone has the potential to generate 30,000 MWs, he said, adding that at present only 2 to 3pc of the energy came from these sources.

“Till about a decade ago, it was thought that environmentally-sustainable policies and actions were a priority for rich countries. But it is equally important for developing countries,” Mr Ayaz added.

Mohammad Farooq, joint secretary (development) at the ministry, said: “Mitigation and adaptation remain top challenges for us. While we are addressing the mitigation side through a number of projects, we need to work on adaptation, specifically at the provincial and local levels where people in the lowest strata of society are suffering the consequences of climate change.”

Published in Dawn, August 6th, 2022

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