Minister: (Mushahidullah Khan hails Obama on clean energy plan, urges U.S. to do more to save plant)

ISLAMABAD: Federal Minister for Climate Change on Tuesday called upon top key global polluters to step up their carbon emission mitigation efforts by particularly increasing their resilience on clean energy sources to cope with global warming.

He said global warming is unlikely to be dealt with to save earth from its negative impacts as long as the rich polluting countries including do not show the world that they are committed to radically reduce carbon emissions to slow down climate change.

“China, United States, Russia, Japan, Germany, Canada, United Kingdom, South and Korea have been ranked among the top 10 polluting countries in the world, who emit the highest carbon dioxide emissions from all forms of industry and fossil fuel consumption. It is these countries, which must show leadership in cutting carbon emissions significantly to save planet from devastating impacts of climate change,” he said in a statement issued here in response to US President Barak Obama’s new Clean Energy Plan announced on Monday.

A new clean energy plan calls on the U.S. to cut carbon emissions from power plants by a third by 2030. The plan, which also mandates a shift to renewable energy from coal-fired electricity, is meant to put the United States in a strong position at international talks in Paris later this year on reaching a deal to curb global warming.

Declaring climate change the gravest threat facing the world today, Obama said during a White House ceremony to formally unveil what he called his “Clean Power Plan”, he highlighted that the regulation requiring the power sector to cut its emissions by 32 percent from 2005 levels by 2030 would reduce Americans’ energy bills and improve the health of vulnerable populations nationwide.

“The new US clean energy plan does deserve appreciation. But, we believe that since America is the second biggest carbon emitter after China, the 32 percent carbon emission target by 2030 does not sound impressive and the target must have been higher to provide pretty strong push for other rich polluters such as Russia, Japan, Germany, United Kingdom, Korea and Canada to announce their more ambitious carbon emission reduction plans, respectively,” Mushahidullah Khan stressed.

The minister also lauds American democratic presidential candidates for praising the plan as a good way to confront the challenges of climate change.

He also flayed republicans for casting the new energy plan as over-regulation and warned that the new clean energy would lead to substantial cut in jobs and inflate utility bills. He seconded a Obama’s statement, where he noted that “no challenge today poses a greater risk to future of all living beings on the planet earth” than climate change that is heating the atmosphere to record levels, and the nation may not be able to reverse the trend if it doesn’t act soon”.

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