Saturday, May 30, 2009
National Year of Environment 2009 (2009-2)
The President and Prime Minister have declared the year 2009 as \"National Year of Environment\". The year 2009 is considered to be the right time for launching a full scale National Level Plans and Programmes in all sectors of Environment, as the National Environment Policy, National Sanitation Policy, National Energy Conservation Policy, Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) Strategy etc. already approved by the Cabinet are ready for implementation. The implementation of these policies would offset the huge cost if environmental degradation estimated by the World Bank to the tune of Rs. 365 billion per annum that accounts for 3% of ourGDP.2. In addition to the cost estimated by the World Bank, Pakistan is also incurring heavy economic loss due to severe climate change impacts. The impacts are visible on biological diversity, desertification, agricultural productivity, water availability, food security, human health and impacts caused due to unusual heavy rains, floods, droughts, glacial melts and glacial lake outbursts.3. Pakistan is fortunate to be one of the eight countries of the World where One UN reform process is being piloted and in the case of Pakistan, this program includes Environment as one of the core program areas. Ministry of Environment and UN Resident Coordinator Office are activelyengaged in finalizing the Environment sector program through an intensive consultation process with all stakeholders at the Federal and Provincial levels. The Ministry has also requested the Federal line agencies. Provincial and District Governments to earmark adequate budgetary allocations in their Annual Development Plans for initiating Environmental Projects and programs on cost sharing basis.4. The National Year of Environment 2009 has commenced with the Regional Conference on Climate Change, The other programs to be launched include, Pakistan Clean Air Program, Pakistan Water and Sanitation Program, Green City Program, Mass Afforestation Program, Green Industry Program, Clean River Program, School Hygiene and Sanitation Program, Village Clean up Program, launch of massive campaign for CDM projects, launching of Climate Change Adaptation and Mitigation Plans, launching of Solid, Hazardous and Hospital Waste Management Program and Coastal and Marine Pollution Control Program.5. Issuance of Commemorative postage stamps depicting Pakistan\'s biodiversity will be a major step toward public awareness on Environment. It is one also of the important activities of the National Year of Environment.To commemorate the National Year of Environment 2009, Pakistan Post is issuing four Commemorative Postage Stamps Rs, 5/- each denomination on March 23, 2009.