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Global Go To Think Tank Index (GGTTI) 2020 launched                    111,75 Think Tanks across the world ranked in different categories.                SDPI is ranked 90th among “Top Think Tanks Worldwide (non-US)”.           SDPI stands 11th among Top Think Tanks in South & South East Asia & the Pacific (excluding India).            SDPI notches 33rd position in “Best New Idea or Paradigm Developed by A Think Tank” category.                SDPI remains 42nd in “Best Quality Assurance and Integrity Policies and Procedure” category.              SDPI stands 49th in “Think Tank to Watch in 2020”.            SDPI gets 52nd position among “Best Independent Think Tanks”.                           SDPI becomes 63rd in “Best Advocacy Campaign” category.                   SDPI secures 60th position in “Best Institutional Collaboration Involving Two or More Think Tanks” category.                       SDPI obtains 64th position in “Best Use of Media (Print & Electronic)” category.               SDPI gains 66th position in “Top Environment Policy Tink Tanks” category.                SDPI achieves 76th position in “Think Tanks With Best External Relations/Public Engagement Program” category.                    SDPI notches 99th position in “Top Social Policy Think Tanks”.            SDPI wins 140th position among “Top Domestic Economic Policy Think Tanks”.               SDPI is placed among special non-ranked category of Think Tanks – “Best Policy and Institutional Response to COVID-19”.                                            Owing to COVID-19 outbreak, SDPI staff is working from home from 9am to 5pm five days a week. All our staff members are available on phone, email and/or any other digital/electronic modes of communication during our usual official hours. You can also find all our work related to COVID-19 in orange entries in our publications section below.    The Sustainable Development Policy Institute (SDPI) is pleased to announce its Twenty-third Sustainable Development Conference (SDC) from 14 – 17 December 2020 in Islamabad, Pakistan. The overarching theme of this year’s Conference is Sustainable Development in the Times of COVID-19. Read more…       FOOD SECIRITY DASHBOARD: On 4th Nov, SDPI has shared the first prototype of Food Security Dashboard with Dr Moeed Yousaf, the Special Assistant to Prime Minister on  National Security and Economic Outreach in the presence of stakeholders, including Ministry of National Food Security and Research. Provincial and district authorities attended the event in person or through zoom. The dashboard will help the government monitor and regulate the supply chain of essential food commodities.

2013- Not a good year for the climate
By: Rina Saeed Khan

The year 2013 was an important and worrying one when it comes
to climate change, because the UN’s global body of scientists who
collaborate on the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) told
us clearly in a report that was released at the end of September that
global warming today is the result of human activities.

The first part of the IPCC’s Fifth Assessment Report, which examines
the physics of climate change, told us that: "It is extremely likely (95
per cent confidence) that human influence on climate caused more than
half of the observed increase in global average surface temperature from
1951-2010."

The report noted that continued greenhouse gas emissions (mainly
carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide) would cause further changes
to our climate system. According to the IPCC, extreme weather events
like storms, floods and droughts are to become the “new normal”; and it
is already happening. This summer heavy monsoon rains triggered major
floods yet again in Pakistan. East Africa is currently suffering from
the worst drought to hit the region in 60 years. Two months ago, Typhoon
Haiyan devastated the Philippines and this Christmas, half a million
people in the US and Canada were without power due to a severe ice
storm. The UK is currently bracing itself for more winter storms and
floods.

It is evident today that our use of hydrocarbon fuels (oil, coal,
gas) since the middle of the 18th century has cost us dearly. The
greenhouse gases released by the burning of these fuels have been
trapped in our atmosphere. They have formed a blanket around the planet,
causing global average temperatures to rise. Scientists tell us the
thicker the blanket, the higher the temperature rise. According to
climate expert and retired Indian ambassador C. Dasgupta who spoke at an
India-Pakistan dialogue on Energy and Climate Change held this month in
Islamabad, “Irrespective of where they occur (greenhouse gases), the
impacts are being felt all over the world”. Super storms like Hurricane
Sandy and Typhoon Haiyan are indeed becoming the new norm.

"What the world needs is an international agreement to address the
issue, under the unifying principle that those responsible should clear
it up. In the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change or UNFCCC
(signed by over 192 countries of the world), you have the important
principle of Common But Differentiated Responsibility,” he explained to
an audience of students, journalists and climate specialists at the
dialogue organised by the Heinrich Boll Foundation and the Sustainable
Development Policy Institute (SDPI). But rich countries no longer want
to shoulder the responsibility of having caused climate change in the
first place through the industrial revolution. “While developing
countries want enhanced implementation of existing commitments and
agreements (Kyoto Protocol, etc), developed countries want new
agreements in which responsibility will not figure.

“Pakistan and India share a common interest in that they both
recognise the principle of Common But Differentiated Responsibility,
otherwise an unfair cost is shifted onto our shoulders which would be a
major setback for us.” He called for India and Pakistan to cooperate
closely during the global climate change negotiations, which have
currently stalled. The UN Climate Change Conference 2013 was held in
Warsaw in Poland this November and the outcome was not promising. The
conference was supposed to provide a road map to a global agreement to
be signed in 2015, but instead rich countries like Australia, Canada and
Japan started back tracking out of their commitments (to cut carbon
dioxide emissions). The $30 billion promised by rich countries as
climate finance to help developing countries in Copenhagen are not
exactly new and additional funds; and we are nowhere close to seeing the
$100bn pledged by 2020. The mechanism of “loss and damage” introduced
by developing countries to protect themselves from future climate
related disasters was not welcomed by rich countries.

According to climate expert Harjeet Singh of Action Aid India who
attended the Warsaw conference, “some countries were not allowing the
discussions to happen and the US, Norway and the European Union were not
engaging constructively; so the civil society members decided to walk
out during the second week of the conference". Around 800 people
belonging to well known green organisations like WWF, Greenpeace and
Oxfam walked out in protest, pointing out that with only two years to
go, nothing was happening on the ground. “We want to bring the soul back
to these negotiations, which are to continue in Peru in 2014 and France
in 2015," explained Harjeet. "We were not walking away, but walking out
… in Poland nothing positive was happening so we decided to put
pressure."

Pakistani climate expert and retired ambassador, Shafqat Kakakhel,
pointed out that “We need to resuscitate the spirit of Rio (the
successful Earth Summit of 1992); we need to go back to the drawing
board and restore the principles of Rio (when the UNFCCC was first
signed) … the G-77 (group of developing countries of which India and
Pakistan are both members) needs to negotiate a better deal”.

The future outlook does indeed look bleak for developing countries
since the principle of equity has more or less been abandoned for now.
According to sustainable development specialist Dr Tariq Banuri (who
founded the SDPI), "we need to come together as a region and advance the
issues at the global level. We need to participate in the global
process with clear understanding of local realities".

This article was originally published at:

The opinions expressed in this article are the author's own and do not necessarily reflect the viewpoint or stance of SDPI.