KARACHI- The fifth International Conference on ‘Environmental Horizon, Sounding the Alarm! Environment, Climate Change and Health’ was recently held at the Prof. Salimuzzaman Siddiqui Auditorium, International Center for Chemical and Biological Sciences (ICCBS), University of Karachi (KU).
The international event was jointly organized by the Karachi University’s Department of Chemistry, ICCBS, and the University’s Office of Research Innovation and Commercialization.
The ceremony was well attended and addressed by Special Secretary Health Dabeer A. Khan, World Wide Fund for Nature Director General Pakistan Hammad Naqi Khan, ICCBS Director Prof. Dr M Iqbal Choudhary, Chairman Chemistry Department Prof. Dr Majid Mumtaz, and Dr James Schauer, American delegate.
Federal Minister of State for Climate Change, Ms Zartaj Gul Wazir expressed her views regarding Climate change and environmental degradation. She requested the citizens of Pakistan to follow the vision of their Prime Minister, by planting trees across the city to make our country green and clean.
She further highlighted the grave matter of increasing prevalence of Diarrhea in Pakistan, and revealed that, every year, around 54,000 Pakistani children die due to diarrhea, which is mostly occurring due to the use of untreated water, which is being released into the ocean, and people belonging to lower socioeconomic status are left with no choice but, to consume unhealthy water. She urged the concerned authorities to take immediate action against this growing problem.
Federal Minister, Zartaj Gul maintained that, the nation needs to make its youth aware regarding the importance of forests and clean environment for optimum human survival.
Upon concluding her discussion, she appreciated the university for organizing such an informative and useful conference.
Meanwhile, Prof. Dr Iqbal Choudhary, ICCBS Director, pointed out that Pakistan was ranked as the 7th most vulnerable country to climate change. He urged that, climate change and environmental degradation should be treated as a communal problem.
As per statistics issued by International organizations, Pakistan has been suffering from various ecological challenges, posing severe threats to human lives.
In Pakistan, environmental issues include deforestation, air, water and noise pollution, climate change, pesticide misuse, soil erosion, natural disasters and desertification, Prof. Choudhary maintained.
Secretary Health, Dabeer A. Khan informed that, the Provincial Government has been fighting against various health problems and diseases, which are directly associated with the environmental degradation and climate change.
Speaking over the issue, Director General, World Wide Fund for Nature, Pakistan, Mr Hammad Naqi Khan stated that, this was the right time to obtain concrete measures to address environmental challenges in the country.
Issues like deforestation, climate change and reduction of freshwater resources have adversely been impacting the environment, health and economy of Pakistan, and serious steps should be taken to safeguard our country.