With declining conditions in forests looming as a threat to climate health and the wellbeing of a billion impoverished people, the world’s largest consortium of agricultural researchers announced the launch of three years an ambitious global research program of US$233 million devoted to forests and agro-forestry and aims to reinvigorate efforts to reduce deforestation and forest degradation and expand the use of trees on farms.
The initiative includes a focus on the critical importance of forests as natural “carbon sinks” that can help slow the pace of climate change and the need to conserve forest biodiversity.
The current state of climate negotiations in Durban, in particular around reduction emissions through deforestation and degradation (REDD+) and its implementation and the drivers of deforestation, were a major focus of discussions at the event.
Pakistan is also pursuing this important area of REDD+ to get maximum benefits out of that not only by protecting the forests but also by earning through carbon credits and same was under discussion by the Pakistani delegation attending the mountain day, a parallel event with forest day and yes, certainly at the sidelines of COP17, an initiative by International Center for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD), Nepalese and Bhutanese government, to have a sustainable future especially in terms of mountains and glaciers.
At this moment, three reports were launched by ICIMOD, in which the findings from the most comprehensive assessment to date on climate change, snow and glacier melt in Asia’s mountainous Hindu Kush-Himalayan (HKH) region—site of Mount Everest and many of the world’s tallest peaks—highlight the region’s extreme vulnerability to climate change, as rising temperatures disturb the balance of snow, ice and water, threatening millions of mountain people and 1.3 billion people living downstream in Asia’s major river basins.
“These reports provide a new baseline and location-specific information for understanding climate change in one of the most vulnerable ecosystems in the world,” said Dr Rajendra Pachauri, Chair of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). “They substantially deepen our understanding of this region – and of all mountain systems – while also pointing to the knowledge gaps yet to be filled and actions that must be taken to deal with the challenge of climate change globally and to minimize the risks from impacts locally.”
During this event, talking to Pulse, Javed Ali Khan said that Pakistan must be included in the mountain countries, as we have a huge Karakurram range and lots of glacial lakes, getting over and over due to the receding glaciers.
"Pakistan intends to work with Nepal, Bhutan, India, China and all other nations to protect the water towers and the only source of fresh water for drinking and agriculture in our region, we don't want to be over looked."