Wednesday May 29, 2024

Pakistan left out of $100 bn finance despite efforts to protect climate

By Kasim Abbasi
October 09, 2021
Pakistan left out of $100 bn finance despite efforts to protect climate

ISLAMABAD: Despite being endorsed by international organisations such as UNDP, UNFCCC, UNICEF and WWF, OECD, ADB etc for its countless efforts to mitigate the effects of global warming, Pakistan has not received a penny from the 100-billion-dollar climate finance promised by developed countries under the Paris Agreement.

Minister for Climate Change Malik Amin Aslam informed The News that Pakistan would take up this issue in the upcoming COP-26 conference. "Climate finance has been a pipedream with big announcements and zero delivery on ground. Pakistan is badly affected by climate change for no fault of its own and is mitigating and forcibly adapting to climate change with its own funds," he said. "The world needs to deliver climate finance credibly and transparently and as per the needs of developing countries, otherwise, climate talks will end with nothing to show to the world," he added.

The Paris Agreement is a legally binding international treaty on climate change. It was adopted by 196 parties at COP 21 in Paris, on December 12, 2015, and entered into force on November 4, 2016. Implementation of the Paris Agreement requires economic and social transformation, based on the best available science. The Paris Agreement works on a 5-year cycle of increasingly ambitious climate action carried out by countries.

Pakistan has completed BTTP even before its completion date and even surpassed it. It has initiated numerous policies to preserve nature. Out of all, Pakistan deserves most and should be funded under the $100 billion climate finance promised by developed countries, said Syeda Hadiqa Jamshed, a climate expert who works in the Ministry of Climate Change.

According to a report by UNFCCC on Pakistan’s determined contribution to climate, Pakistan’s ratification was also envisaged before the 22nd Conference of the Parties (COP 22) of the UNFCCC (United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change). Pakistan’s vulnerability to adverse impacts of climate change is well established and widely recognized, the report added.

Further, research done by an expert group on climate finance published on December 2020 stated that in Pakistan 60,000 unemployed labourers are being paid to set up tree nurseries and monitor forests through the country’s 10 billion Tree Tsunami programme. The challenge for much of the world’s countries is to develop strong green deals in daunting circumstances.

UNDP published an article on November 2020 in which it said Pakistan is one of the few countries to achieve “on track status” vis-à-vis SDG 13 on climate change. The achievement of the status is largely, a result of several policies and initiatives by the government, which have been launched with the aim to improve the environment and manage the changing climate, UNDP stated. These include among others, ‘Clean and Green Pakistan’, ‘Ten Billion Tree Tsunami’, ‘Protected Areas Initiative’ and “Recharge Pakistan”.

Relief Web also endorsed Pakistan in its article published in 2019 stating that Pakistan, which has been listed as the 7th most vulnerable country by climate change, is now seriously tackling the vagaries of weather, both at the official as well as non-official level. Pakistan has further initiated multiple programmes and formulated policies in order to protect the environment and the drastically changing climate in the region. The Ministry of Climate Change, to reduce the impacts of climate change, implemented Glacial Lake Outburst Flood (GLOF) risk reduction in northern Pakistan. The objective of the project was to strengthen resilience of communities that are likely to be affected by GLOF. The MoCC has initiated the Snow Leopard and Ecosystem Protection Programme funded by GEF. The project was initiated on September 2018 and aims to promote an integrated landscape-wide approach for the survival of snow leopard and its prey species by reducing threats and applying sustainable land and forest management in critical habitats in northern Pakistan.

The independent expert group on climate finance stated in a research that 2021 would be a critical year – to sustain trust between developed and developing countries maintain momentum in the run-up to COP26, and to forge a new consensus about the necessary climate action and ambition to achieve global carbon neutrality by mid-century. The immediate and urgent need for the ambition in 2021 so as to recover lost ground does not end in 2021. It only starts then. There is a need for a significant ramping up of climate finance from here on, and it will have to be mobilized from all sources.

Pakistan is now fully prepared for the upcoming COP-26 conference in Paris and hopes that the efforts put forward by the government of Pakistan will be noted by developed countries and the promise will be fulfilled. Malik Amin Aslam along with the climate change secretary will take part from Pakistan in the forthcoming COP-26 conference.