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October 31, 2018

Pakistan to take up smog issue with India

National

October 31, 2018

Islamabad: Worried about its adverse impact on the environment, Pakistan has planned to take up the issue of smog with India for corrective measures.

"We are concerned about the menace of smog coming in from across the border and will raise the issue with India through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to prevent the burning of crop waste there," Adviser to Prime Minister on Climate Change Malik Amin Aslam told a visiting delegation of European Parliamentarian here.

The delegation comprised George Philipp Anton Mayer, Jean Lanbert, Javeria Rizvi Kabani and Wajid Khan.

The adviser highlighted the environmental threat caused by smog and said the adaptation of new methods would help mitigate the adverse impact of smog.

"We need to look for new methods so that environmental degradation may be alleviated. Also, the cooperation of NGOs and civil society is very imperative for the protection and preservation of the environment," he said.

The adviser highlighted the potential of renewable energy in Pakistan and said the government was focusing its attention on advancing the production of renewable energy as the geographical location and ecological environment are very conducive to solar and wind energy production in Pakistan.

He briefed the delegation about the government's initiatives and the Ministry of Climate Change programme of Clean Green Pakistan.

Recalling the Pakistan Tereek-i-Insaf successful initiatives of billion tree tsunami in the previous government in the province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, now the PTI government in the center is implementing the 10 billion tree plantation all over the country in the coming years under the programme of Clean Green Pakistan.

He said the five pillars of Clean Green Pakistan included tree plantation, solid waste management, liquid waste management, total sanitation/ toilets, and safe drinking water.

Meanwhile, members of the Green Force Environment Commission called for keeping Islamabad’s population in proportion to the available natural resources.

During a meeting with Adviser to Prime Minister on Climate Change Malik Amin Aslam at the ministry here, Bilal Haque, head of the commission working for the preservation and protection of green belt and protected areas of Islamabad, said the master plan of Islamabad was a solemn document that should have been respected and followed but the successive governments amended and breached it without providing a transparent process for its changes and modification.

"We suggest that the master plan of Islamabad be changed and maintained in a transparent manner, with the spirit of the original plan being maintained. There should be a committee with all stakeholders being part of it to review the plan in light of law and current environmental status and climate change requirements," he said.

He said the proposed committee should be authorised to take concrete decisions. The visitors said in each sector of Islamabad, there should be only one plaza allowed.

They said each building should dedicate 1/5 of its land for forest cover.

The visitors praised Malik Amin for his sincere efforts for protection and preservation of green belt and protected area of Islamabad.