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ISLAMABAD: In a unique distinction, the Aiwan-e-Sadr was Friday, awarded an international certification of ISO 50001 EnMS, making it the world's first such President Secretariat, what President Arif Alvi said had successfully curtailed over 35 percent of its energy usage and would save Rs72.5 million to the national kitty.

After assuming the office in 2018, President Dr Alvi envisioned a "Green Presidency Initiative" to curtail President's Secretariat energy usage and shift it to renewable energy source.

Describing the monetary benefits of going green, the president said savings from energy conservation and clean energy generation are equivalent to 3,154,750 KWh. The initiative equates to 3,144 tons reduction of Green House Gases and plantation of 142,909 mature trees.

The Aiwan-e-Sadr also got GBC SEED Platinum as the building is now fully powered by an in-house 1-MW Solar System. The ISO 50001 EnMS certificate was awarded to Project Director Shahid Shaukat by Abdur Razzaq Lakhani of SGS and GBC Seed Platinum certificate by Rashid Bashir of Green Building Council.

Addressing the ceremony, the president said the Presidency's initiative should also be replicated across the country, considering the importance of energy conservation across the world. He thanked the private sector companies who supported the initiative under their Corporate Social Responsibility.

President Alvi said it was always wise to prevent carbon emission as the world including Pakistan was under pressure regarding availability of water and other natural resources. Through this initiative, the Green House Gas production has been reduced at the building from 102 tons in 2018 to 2028 tons this year.

Also citing holy Prophet's teachings on conservation of water and wastage of resources, the president called for inculcating habits in youths to conserve energy. He said while launching the initiative, he never thought of getting such recognition.

He asked the youth to be conscious of the global needs considering the sensitivity of the situation. Exemplifying Barcelona, the president also called for utilising the buildings' roofs for green purposes such as plantation or solar panels.

He said the Aiwan-e-Sadr's going green would help prevent 3,144 tons of carbon emission, which equals 325 trucks. He said Prime Minister Imran Khan launched Billion Tree Tsunami, when such green projects were nowhere in the limelight in the world. However, later, the whole society including civil society, mosques and youths engaged in 10 Billion Tree Tsunami.

The president, who earlier distributed appreciation certificates among the representatives of collaborating companies, also called for discouraging the habits of flood irrigation in agriculture and wastage of food and lauded the incumbent government's policy of vertical buildings.

He said a Miyawaki Forest was also being developed in the Presidency with the support of the private sector. The president said in order to address the food security, it was essential to stop fighting against the people.

He said the trillions of dollars spent in Afghanistan could have helped end hunger, if had been used otherwise. Executive Director of Association of Energy Engineers Bill Kent, in his virtual address, congratulated President Dr Alvi and his team on achieving the milestone of making Aiwan-e-Sadr the first ever Presidency in the world, which had been awarded ISO-50001 Energy Management System certification.

He said the certification manifested Pakistan's commitment to achieving its clean energy and energy efficiency goals. He said Pakistan was rich with energy resources including wind, solar and biomass and that if fully tapped, the country could contribute to global economy. He said the countries needed to educate architects, builders and developers to help achieve the energy conservation goals.

Calling the President Secretariat's initiative as a step in right direction, Kent said it served as role model for energy efficiency and conservation measures in the country. He said established in 1977, the AEE has also its presence in Pakistan and 38 professionals had been awarded AEE certifications.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2021

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