Pakistan Cables Marks 70th Anniversary in Collaboration with UET, Emphasizing Sustainable Engineering

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‘Ignite Possibilities’ – a collaboration between Pakistan Cables Limited (PCL) and the University of Engineering and Technology (UET) –  set out on a mission to outline a new future for the world of development and sustainability.

Climate catastrophes have wreaked havoc across Pakistan, with the most recent crisis—deteriorating air quality index in major cities—attracting global attention. Lahore and Karachi have respectively occupied the 3rd and 4th place for the worst air quality internationally, as per IQAir.

Rapid and unsustainable urbanization has made the country susceptible to excessive flooding, and the systematic elimination of biodiversity had intensified heat waves that have pushed countless people into hospitals. These were just some of the calamities extensively discussed at the seminar, underscoring the urgency with which global and national actors must act.

This sobering reality demands immediate attention, and ‘Ignite Possibilities’ gave a glimpse into the potential that lies in sustainable engineering. PCL has invested in cutting-edge research for seven decades now, creating remarkable projects that prioritize social corporate responsibility. For instance, the Electric Show aimed to bridge the gap between academic learning and practical knowledge in electrical engineering by providing free and easy access to online workshops.

Similarly, AbhiSalary, a company that enables all employees to access immediate earned wage with the ease of using the ABHI mobile app. It is also the first in Pakistan to have its science-based targets for emission reduction be validated and approved by the SBTi.

With such endeavors, PCL has always remained are the forefront of the sustainable development movement. The objective has now become to take it a step further and as per Arshad Shafiq, PCL’s Director of Operations, the newly developed urban forest is path forward. The forest, populated by 50,000 species of indigenous plants, has fostered a diverse atmosphere populated by insects, animals and birds.

In spirit of the proactive approach taken by PCL for seven decades now, Inspire Possibilities drew upon the expertise of notable professionals like Imrana Tiwana, Convener of Lahore Bachao Tehreek and a Board Member of the Lahore Conservation Society. Her passionate speech painted a worrying picture for the way the development sector is progressing, emphasizing the need for future generations to prioritize critical thinking. She gave further insight into the Lahore Master Plan, detailing special considerations given to sustainable when designing the entire development project.

Raza Ali Dada, the Managing Partner of Nayyar Ali Dada & Associates and a leading architect eloquently captured the problem of rapid urbanization and the long-term impacts of sacrificing at least 80% of the country’s green cover. Along with this, he gave fascinating insights into how sustainable engineering has paved a way for architecture to evolve to become more environmentally friendly.

Hafsa Naeem, the Country Director for the Solar Water Project by Bondh E Shams, presented concrete proof of the utility of sustainable engineering as she presented her water box used for filtration, thus guaranteeing access to clean and safe drinking water in far-flung areas. This is particularly important considering the country’s water table continues to fall at unprecedented rates, with most cities lacking accessing to fresh water sources.

“It falls on us to realize that without developing innovative and sustainable solutions, we will be struggling to survive in our land in the near future.” Dr. Habeeb ur Rehman’s words perhaps perfectly summarize the main takeaway from the seminar; the time to act is now, and future generations must adapt to an environment that has changed too rapidly. Ignorance is no longer an option.

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