Lahore, October 20, 2008 (IUCN) – A four-day training course titled "Addressing Climate Change through Better Air Quality Management’" has been organized by Pak EPA in collaboration with Pakistan Clean Air Network, IUCN Pakistan and Clean Air Initiative for Asian Cities Centre. The course will be underway from October 20-23, 2008.
Air pollution is a critical environmental issue in the major cities of Pakistan. The Economic Survey of Pakistan 2005-06 stated that air pollution levels in Pakistan’s most populated cities were among the highest in the world and were climbing, causing serious health impacts. On the other hand climate change is a global issue but with potential significant consequences for Pakistan.
The purpose of the workshop is to improve the capacity relevant organizations to address the challenges posed by both air pollution and climate change.
The course is being attended by a diverse group from relevant organizations, including heads and representatives of various government departments, subject specialists, researchers, representatives of civil society organizations, academia and media.
Welcoming the participants, Mr. Zia-ul-Islam, Director, Pakistan Environment Protection Agency, emphasized that climate change and Air Quality Management (AQM) are global challenges and Pakistan is both a recipient and a contributor. Key issues highlighted include vehicle pollution, garbage burning, industrial emission, agriculture waste burning, forest fires, indoor air pollution and transboundary air quality. Mr. Islam said that Pak-EPA and Ministry of Environment is cognizant of the issue. While sharing achievements of the Government of Pakistan, he said that a National Environment Policy has already been approved and work on ambient air quality standard draft is currently underway. Mr. Islam congratulated the participants on playing a significant role in AQM in Pakistan. He sought guidance of the experts present and stressed on the support of legal fraternity, NGOs and civil society organizations, in defining a way forward.
Speaking on the occasion, Mr. Ahmad Saeed, Principal Expert, Global Change, IUCN Pakistan, advised on addressing air pollution holistically, rather than ‘looking at the end of the pipe treatment’. He added further that climate change needs to be addressed through AQM as these two are interrelated. He highlighted the need to prepare proper policy framework at the federal and provincial level, to address air quality related issues effectively.
Two international experts are present at the occasion to share their experience and expertise. On behalf of Stockholm Environment Institute, Dr. Dieter Schwela, Senior Research Fellow, proposed working with Pakistan to overcome deficiencies. He added further that developing countries, such as Pakistan, can certainly benefit from the experience and sophisticated means of developed countries, especially some countries in Europe, in addressing AQM.
Areas of discussion in the training course includes addressing urban air pollution and integration with climate change, emission inventories, source apportionment, monitoring, dispersion modelling, quality assurance, potential impacts of climate change and air pollution, and governance and policies in Pakistan.
For more information, please contact:
Ahmad Saeed Mohammad Aqib Uddin
Principle Expert, Global Change Coordinator, Pakistan Clean Air Network - IUCN
House 9, Street 64, F- 8/4 1 Bath Island Road
Islamabad Karachi 75530
Tel: + 92 51 2850250 Tel. +92 21 5861540
email: [email protected] email: [email protected]