Engaging the youth in climate action and green activities is vital to transforming the country towards a low-carbon and climate resilient future, Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Climate Change Malik Amin Aslam said as the chief guest at a cycle rally.
“Achieving sustainable climate action is only possible after engaging over 60pc of the country’s young population below the age of 30 and between 15 and 29 years,” said Malik Amin Aslam.
The rally under the theme ‘Cycling for Green Pakistan’ was organized by a local organization of young students with support from the Ministry of Climate Change and various cyclists groups and organizations.
The participants cycled from the Rose and Jasmine Garden and the Parade Ground near the I-8 roundabout overhead bridge and back to the starting point.
Many government representatives, teachers and researchers joined the youngsters in the ride.
Aslam said the government had launched various initiatives as part of the Clean and Green Pakistan programme, in which the youth are being actively engaged.
He said the programme was being implemented to make cities environmentally friendly and climate resilient, with the health of 120,000 youth volunteers who have been registered with the programme since its launch last November. “I strongly believe that such a huge youth population of the country have an increasingly strong social and environmental awareness and [are] motivated to play their part in transforming our country as a whole towards a low-carbon and climate resilient future,” he said.
He added that the use of fossil fuels, deforestation and unsustainable agricultural practices, and soaring use of coal for energy purposes over last several decades have contributed to global warming. These activities made global economies, particularly in developing countries, highly vulnerable to the fallout of climate change, he said.
The impact of climate change has led to a rapid decline in the availability of nutritious food and clean water to millions of people worldwide, including in Pakistan, and has destroyed ecosystems and living environments.
“Consequently, today millions of the people face malnutrition, hunger, diseases, and migration to safer places, rendering youth particularly vulnerable,” Aslam said. He said: “In this backdrop, it is high time that youth populations are made part of the programmes and activities related to climate change, low-carbon energy, climate smart agriculture and particularly raising public awareness, so that they would effectively pedal the global climate action towards a climate-resilient future.”