Senate passed on Friday the Pakistan Climate Change Bill into law in its sitting, paving the way for strengthening the country’s institutional ability and propping up efforts to cope with delirious impacts of climate change on various socio-economic sectors, particularly agriculture, water and health.
The Federal Minister for Climate Change and Law & Justice, Senator Zahid Hamid, introduced the legislation in the Senate.
The layout report of Senate Standing Committee on Climate Change was presented by Senator Samina Abid on March 16 in the Senate. The National Assembly has already approved this Act.
Author of the Act, Mr. Zahid Hamid, said, “The Pakistan Climate Change Act 2016 has been hammered out to tackle the pressing climate risks and secure global funding for implementing projects to boost country’s climate resilience, protect lives and livelihoods of the people, mainly those associated with agriculture.”
During the debate in the Senate prior to the approval, the move to promulgate the Climate Change Act was appreciated by the opposition, which acknowledged its unprecedented significance.
Senators Sherry Rehman and Azam Swati commented that this law was need of the hour.
The federal minister said that as proposed in the law, efforts would be expedited to establish the Pakistan Climate Change Council to be chaired by the prime minister.
“The Council will also comprise chief ministers and ministers holding the environment and climate change portfolios of all Provinces and three administrative units namely Gilgit-Baltistan, Azad Jammu & Kashmir and Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATAs). Besides, the advisory body will consist of 30 other members, 20 of them from non-governmental organizations, researchers, scientists, technical experts, educationists concerned with climate change,” the minister Zahid Hamid said.
He further said that climate change authority would also be established as proposed in the Act that would play a part for implementing climate change policy by working with all federating units through mutual consultations and understandings.
Pakistan is ranked seventh most vulnerable country despite its less than one percent contribution in climate altering global emissions.
Link to Climate Change Act 2016: http://www.na.gov.pk/ uploads/documents/1480420169_ 248.pdf