UN, Pakistan Hold Conference on Climate Change and Development
24 October 2010: The Ministry of Environment of Pakistan, in collaboration with One UN Joint Programme on Environment, organized an International Conference on Climate Change and Development on 21-22 October 2010, in Islamabad, Pakistan, to take stock of the unfolding effects of climate change in the South Asian region, with a focus on Pakistan.
The Conference brought together over 600 participants who focused on how to ensure access to technology and adequate financing to mainstream climate change-related concerns into the development process. Opening the Conference, Yousaf Raza Gillani, Prime Minister of Pakistan, described the development of a comprehensive national climate change strategy and action framework, which will facilitate appropriate responses and actions in mitigation and adaptation, allowing the mainstreaming of climate change into broader development efforts.
The main objectives of the Conference included: assisting policy makers in coherently mainstreaming climate change concerns in the overall development process; deliberating on the science and policy in managing risks and impacts of climate change and to ensure water, food and energy security; focusing on the means of implementation to ensure access to technology and adequate financing to achieve sustainable development in developing countries; and identifying and promoting avenues for regional and multilateral cooperation to ensure climate change-responsive development.
Toshihiro Tanaka, UN Development Programme (UNDP) Country Director, shared key milestones set jointly with the Ministry of Environment of Pakistan and provincial governments towards building resilience and capacity to cope with climate change, including the National Policy on Climate Change followed by the National Plans of Actions for Climate Change Adaptation and Mitigation. During the closing session, Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari stressed that climate change is not only an environmental issue but a multi-dimensional development issue. He highlighted the need to recognize "the human face of climate change." The outcomes of the Conference will contribute to Pakistan's development of its substantive position at the upcoming Cancun Climate Change Conference. [UNDP Pakistan Press Release]