Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) led government, in line with the party’s Green Development Agenda, would develop Pakistan-China ‘Charter of Environment’ to make China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) a model for ‘Eco-civilization.’
This was said by senior PTI leader and Global Vice President IUCN (The International Union for Conservation of Nature) Malik Amin Aslam while delivering a lecture titled ‘Environment and Climate Change Vision of PTI’, organized by Sustainable Development Policy Institute (SDPI).
Malik Amin was of the view that unlike other political parties, PTI was the only political party that had come up with ‘Green Promise’ in the party’s manifesto. He said PTI has already promised in its 100 days agenda to launch 10 Billion Tree Tsunami Programme countrywide to tackle climate change.
It was only due to political will at the part of PTI leadership that Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) government had planted more than a billion trees throughout the province and it got a global recognition by successfully winning ‘Bonn Challenge’ in the fight against climate change, he added. Amin further said that his party under its ‘Green Charter’ has completed its homework and is fully prepared to achieve the goals of clean water, clean air, protecting and enhancing forest cover and biodiversity.
Speaking on the occasion, Dr. Abid Qaiyum Suleri, Executive Director, SDPI said it encouraging to note that the would-be government of PTI will give environment and climate change a central position amid economic growth and development priorities. While referring to SDPI’s recent Environmental Survey, Dr. Abid said that though awareness level of the voters on environmental issues seems high, but majority of them did not include environmental issues as determinants for voting in the 2018 elections. He said the voters need to prioritize the environmental issues and political parties should take the environment and climate change seriously. SDPI would partner in journey with the new government and continue to provide evidence-based policy advice on issues around sustainable development, he added.
The Chairman Board of Governors of SDPI, Amb (Retd) Shafqat Kakakhel, said the biggest challenge that we all have to fight together would be the prejudice around environmental issues. He said though there are enormous challenges ahead of new government, but it was the civil society which helps and compels the governments to take up the environmental issue.
He said the Ministry of Environment has the smallest budget which needs to be enhanced by the upcoming government. It should be realized that environmental protection is not a breach on the development but it happens to be an insurance policy for developmental agenda in the long run.