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LAHORE: A large number of people took out ‘Climate Justice March’ on the call of Asian People’s Movement on Debt and Development from Lahore Press Club to Aiwan-e-Iqbal on Monday.

The participants belonging to civil society organisations, trade unions and social movements demanded climate justice.

The participants were holding placards and chanting slogans demanded from governments around the world to initiate meaningful actions against climate change.

The placards read “climate action now, stop air pollution, clean Lahore city, 100% renewable energy for communities and people, stop coal energy, say no to fossil fuel, stop funding fossil fuels.”

In order to sound the alarm about the climate emergency, the participants were wearing red shirts with slogan ‘climate revolution, not pollution’.

Farooq Tariq from the Pakistan Kissan Rabita committee said that fossil and coal-based energy projects must be stopped immediately.

He added that gas and oil-based energy systems are not only expensive but also detrimental to the environment. He added that the prices of these are also increased on the demand of IMF.

Farooq added that sustainable energy methods need to be adopted so that Pakistan becomes self-sufficient in energy.

Environmental lawyer Ahmed Rafay Alam said that the problem of climate change cannot be left only to political parties and everyone needs to play their part.

Rafay added that Pakistan still has to fulfill its promise of phasing out coal that it announced last year as the coal-based energy plants are still working and functional. He added that fossil-based energy systems are not only expensive but cause pollution as well.

Adding that Pakistan has good sources of renewable energy systems, he stressed on the need for alternative resources to produce energy.

Spokesperson Haqooq-e-Khalq Movement Ayesha Ahmed said because of government’s negligence and lack of understanding of climate issues, the beautiful city of Lahore is now the most polluted city on earth. She added that environmental costly projects such as Ravi Urban development project must be stopped.

Zaighum Abbas, an academic and activist associated with Asian people’s movement on debt and development, said that “climate change can’t be addressed without the radical transformation of capitalist production.”

The organisations participating in march included Asian People’s Movement on Debt and Development, Joint Action Committee for People’s Rights, All Pakistan Workers Confederation, Pakistan Kissan Rabita Committee, Haqooq-e-Khalq Movement, Progressive Students Collective, Aurat March, Woman Action Forum, South Asia Partnership, Labor Education Foundation..

Copyright Business Recorder, 2021

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