Call for dealing with climate change effectively at the global level to mitigate perils of rising temperature, food insecurity

Speakers at a seminar have urged steps to mitigate perils of rising temperature and food insecurity and said that natural disasters are increasing due to climate change, if climate change is not dealt with at the global level, including in Pakistan, then there will be a water and food crisis in the future.

They said the underground water will be depleted, reservoirs will decrease and floods will occur more frequently, adding that human behavior will alter, while Thatta and Badin cities could disappear under the sea.

This they said while addressing a one-day national seminar on climate change, which was organized in the auditorium of the Center for Pure and Applied Geology by the Green Youth Movement Club (GYMC), University of Sindh in collaboration with the Directorate of Students Affairs and Humdam Foundation. The seminar was chaired by the Vice-Chancellor Professor (Meritorious) Dr. Muhammad Siddique Kalhoro.

In his presidential address, the Vice-Chancellor said that the students of the University of Sindh must develop the ability to face climate change, so that they could face the challenges arising in this regard in the future.

He said that global warming was the global problem, while Pakistan was hardly one percent responsible for it and the rest of the world was fully responsible for increasing climate change.

He said that climate change could be dealt with by eliminating the sources of energy being produced; however, he said the industrialization was being asked to minimize, but doing so will stop the development process across the world.

“In order to face climate change, there is a need to take alternative measures to get electricity from solar system, which is being worked on all over the world”, he said and added that the University of Sindh had got a project of Rs. 4 million approved from the provincial government for campus solarization, which will make a big difference when it came to global warming.

Dr. Kalhoro said that hearing about the dangers of climate change made people cringe, but scientists should provide effective solutions to it and that information should reach everyone.

He said that there was a need to create awareness among the general public about climate change and the resulting natural disasters, adding that an important academic program like BS (Disaster Management) had been started by the University of Sindh to prepare the youth against natural disasters.

The Vice-Chancellor further stated that all kinds of troubles including heavy rains, floods and natural disasters occurred in the developed countries like China and USA but due to advance planning in these countries, the damage was reduced, while in Pakistan there was no planning in advance.

He said that waste management could be an important project at the university level, which researchers must work on and materialize. He added that the provincial and federal disaster management authorities should assign projects to the researchers of the University of Sindh and the industries should also do research work with the University so that the natural disasters could be coped with together in the future.

Chairman of Department of Geography, Shah Abdul Latif University Khairpur Dr. Noor Hussain Chandio said that climate change will not only affect temperature and rainfall, but it will also pose a threat to water and food security across the world including Pakistan.

He explained the latest trends and changes in snow cover and said that the changing weather patterns will also affect the local people, while within the next few years, the sea level will also increase, due to which Thatta and Badin cities will completely come under sea.

He said that climate change was also affecting the ecosystem; therefore, there was a need to conduct an awareness campaign among the people.

Director Center for Pure and Applied Geology, University of Sindh Professor Dr. Rafique Ahmed Lashari said that Pakistan was the fourth in the world, which had been affected by climate change disasters.

“Flood is a natural process, which cannot be stopped, but it can be managed to minimize the damage”, Dr. Lashari said and added that the underground water reservoirs will decrease, floods will occur and there will be an alteration in human behavior as a result of climate change, along with water and food crisis in the future.

In-charge Director Center for Environmental Sciences Dr. Amanullah Mahar pointed out that due to climate change; the recent monsoon rains had wreaked havoc in various parts of Pakistan including Sindh.

He said that if there had been advance planning, there would not have been such large-scale displacement and destruction in Sindh due to the monsoon rains and flash floods.

Secretary Green Youth Movement Club Dr. Saju Mall Meghwar said that the participation of a large number of male and female students in the seminar was laudable. Giving credit to the club members, he stressed the need for practical measures to create awareness among stakeholders to deal with the problem of climate change and reduce its negative effects.

He stated that due to climate change, people's lives were also changing. He emphasized that efforts should be continued to create awareness among people in the future as well.

CEO Humdam Foundation Hyderabad Shaukat Ali Soomro said that there was an urgent need to educate the public by organizing such seminars, because climate change was a global issue.

Focal Person Green Youth Movement Club and Director of Students Affairs Dr. Muhammad Younus Laghari said that the Green Youth Movement was a part of the Prime Minister's Youth Program, which was introduced by the Higher Education Commission to keep the youth engaged in protecting the environment in Sindh University.

On the occasion, the captain of the club, Shah Ali Shasanshah said that by organizing a seminar together with Humdam Foundation, the public will be aware of the ongoing work to protect the coastal forests.

In the seminar, Dean Faculty of Natural Sciences Professor Dr. Wazir Ali Baloch, members of Syndicate Dr. Arfana Begum Mallah, Dr. Muhammad Aqeel Bhutto, Umeed Ali Rind, Abdul Rahman Nangraj, Provost Boys Hostels Dr. Pasand Ali Khoso, Director Institute of Physics Dr. Nek Muhammad Sheikh, Chairman Department of Sociology Dr. Ahmed Ali Brohi, Dr. Muhammad Ali Nizamani, Dr. Mushtaque Ahmad Pathan, President Women Chamber of Commerce Hyderabad Shahida Ghulam Rasool, Vice-President Rozina, Security Officer Kashif Ali Narejo, Dr. Zulfiqar Ali Laghari, Dr. Ayaz Samo, Dr. Zulfiqar Ali Zaidi Dr. Rushdullah alias Makhmour Bukhari, Dr. Raja Daher Hakro, Dr. Mukesh Kumar Khatwani and many others were also present.

Director Institute of Art and Design and young artist Professor Saeed Ahmed Mangi paid the vote of thanks on the occasion.