Punjabs Minister for revenue,rehabilitation,NRI affairs and non conventional energy,Bikram Singh Majithia,on Monday said the state government is working out an action plan to ward off adverse impact on the climate due to the rising pollution.
Speaking at the roundtable discussion on the theme,climate change connecting the dots organised by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) and the British High Commission on Monday,Majithia said,Punjab has initiated the process of preparation of a strategy and action plan for climate change (SAPCC) with technical support from German International Cooperation (GIZ),as per national action plan for climate change (NAPCC) framework. It focuses on integrating climate change into policies and programmes of the state.
The meet was attended by a number of political functionaries from different parties to discuss the socio-economic causes and impact of climate change on Chandigarh and Punjab.
Majithia said,The government of Punjab has accorded significant and increasing attention to climate change issues in recent years and is duly committed to sensitising its population to it both because of its potential impacts on humans,ecosystems and economies and also on account of the scale of effort needed to mitigate it.
About the strategic action plan,he said that the plan is bringing out state specific targets for each aspect with short and long-term actions for achievement of targets developed in consultation with the concerned stakeholders from government,universities and industry associations. The minister also informed that the government has planned to establish a center of excellence on climate change at Agriculture University,Ludhiana.
Deliberating upon the various missions being carried out by the government of Punjab,he said that many steps have been taken by the department of environment and forest with regard to environmental protection like launching of green Punjab mission under which the state government proposes to increase the area of the state under forest cover from the present 5.13 per cent to 15 per cent by 2022. He also highlighted the energy conservation measures implemented by PEDA (Punjab Energy Development Agency) like mandatory use of solar water heating systems in buildings having area of more than 500 sq yards as a measure towards protecting the environment.
Stressing on global environmental change,Sandip Verma,parliamentary under secretary, department of energy and climate change,UK,said,Legislators have a key role to play and they can really make a difference. The new toolkit that has been launched on Monday clearly sets out the causes and impacts of climate change at local level and what legislators can do to change it,including through legislation and through their strong people to people connections in their own constituencies.
The legislators can spread the message down the wire to
the people concerned across states. Climate is far above
politics and we all should work in tandem in spreading the awareness amongst the masses. Among others who spoke on the occasion include,MP,Bathinda,Harsimrat Kaur Badal.