- Foreign Minister says Pakistan emits less than one percent of global greenhouse emissions, yet it remains the epicenter of climate change
Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari on Friday urged the international community to provide urgent and adequate assistance to countries suffering from the impact of climate change, Radio Pakistan reported.
While addressing the G77 and China annual meeting of Foreign Ministers in New York, Bilawal said that Pakistan has suffered massively due to climate change.
He said Pakistan emits less than one percent of global greenhouse emissions, yet it was the epicenter of the impacts of climate change.
The foreign minister, once again, reminded the forum that one-third of Pakistan was under water – a catastrophe caused by torrential rains-induced floods.
“Over 15,00 people have been killed and thousands more injured,” Bilawal said, adding that more than 30 million people have been affected and six million are absolutely destitute.
He said around 1.7 million homes, over 12,000 kilometers of roads, 350 bridges, and five million acres of crops, have been destroyed.
Bilawal said that the total damage was estimated at over $30 billion.
“The scale and magnitude of flood losses in Pakistan are too big and the international community's support is vital to complement upcoming rehabilitation and reconstruction efforts,” Bilawal said, emphasizing that more than financial assistance, Pakistan needed climate justice and a Green Plan to rebuild its infrastructure and economy.
FM Bilawal called for mobilising urgent humanitarian, economic and financial support to the more than 50 developing countries which are in economic distress.
He, however, welcomed the proposal of the UN Secretary-General for an "SDG stimulus" of 500 billion dollars to enable those countries which are in extreme economic distress to revive their economies and development objectives.
During his address to the Council on Foreign Relations last night, Bilawal stressed that collective efforts to mitigate the adverse impacts of climate change.
Bilawal said, being the 8th most vulnerable country to climate change, Pakistan was facing the cataclysmic consequences of climate change despite a minuscule contribution to global greenhouse gas emissions.
The foreign minister also highlighted the government's sustained and robust measures in dealing with this calamity, despite challenges.