Choose between renewable energy or destruction: Dr Banuri
Sustainable Development Policy Institute founding executive director Dr Tariq Banuri has said that fossil fuels will clearly destroy the world due to global warming and the resulting climate change so we have to make the switch to renewable energy sources.
Dr Banuri was speaking at a daylong meeting to debate upon ‘Climate and Energy’ jointly organised here by SDPI and Centre for Climate Research and Development at Comsats University.The meeting attended by experts from various countries discussed issues that will be deliberated upon at international climate change negotiations to be held in Paris, France, in December. Shakeel Ramay from SDPI moderated the debate.
Dr Banuri said that human beings have destroyed ecosystems on Earth (more than 50% of the world’s forests are gone) and we are in a crisis that is endangering the entire planet. He said that as a result of climate change, Pakistan is now facing more cyclones in the Arabian Sea, the number and intensity of floods in Pakistan has increased, there is now Dengue Fever in the country due to rising temperatures and our ice packs in the high mountains are melting. Even our monsoons, he continued, are becoming erratic so climate change is indeed a very serious issue. “The only solution is a form of energy that will not destroy the planet,” he concluded.
Federal Minister for Climate Change Mushaid Ullah Khan, inaugurating the debate, said that Metro Service is using energy efficient (Euro II) engines in the buses and will save on fossil fuels. He also pointed out that the National Climate Change Policy is finally going to be implemented and that in the 2015-16 budget, the Government of Pakistan has announced interest free loans for solar tube wells, zero import duty on solar and wind power generation equipment and 5-years tax holiday and zero sales tax on local manufacture of solar, wind power equipment.
Earlier in his welcome address, SDPI Executive Director Dr Abid Qaiyum Suleri said that the debate is learning from stakeholders and people in order to strengthen people’s resilience. He said we will learn what people think of the climate change and the energy challenges facing Earth and the ways to solve them.
Dr Khalid Riaz from the CCRD in his vote of thank observed that climate change is a shared responsibility.
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The opinions expressed in this article are the author's own and do not necessarily reflect the viewpoint or stance of SDPI.