Govt to open climate change fighting wing | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, December 24, 2015 / LAST MODIFIED: 03:00 AM, December 24, 2015

Govt to open climate change fighting wing

Mixed reactions at Prothom Alo discussion about Bangladesh's Paris summit achievements; CPD calls for adopting low-emission economy

The government is going to open a separate "climate change wing" under the ministry of environment and forests to coordinate and bring pace in the climate change related works, Secretary to the ministry Dr Kamal Uddin Ahmed told a discussion yesterday.

Bangla daily Prothom Alo organised the discussion titled "Paris Climate Conference and Bangladesh" at the newspaper's office.

Meanwhile, think-tank Centre for Policy Dialogue (CPD) yesterday said the Paris agreement reaffirmed the necessity for Bangladesh to take adaptation measures to protect lives and livelihoods in a changing climate, and adopt a low-emission economy to continue growing as a prosperous country.

"Bangladesh has to invest in green technology," Fahmida Khatun, research director of CPD, said in her presentation at the capital's Brac Centre Inn, where CPD organised a press conference to give its reactions on the recently concluded global climate summit in Paris.

Regarding the Paris conference and Bangladesh's position, the secretary said the Paris agreement might not fulfil all the demands of Bangladesh and other vulnerable countries. But the country needs to capitalise on whatever was achieved in Paris, he said.

The secretary said the ministry would brief the prime minister about the Paris agreement in the next cabinet meeting.

Dr Ainun Nishat, former vice chancellor of Brac University, and one of the key negotiators of Bangladesh, said now it was not the time to discuss what Bangladesh could not achieve in Paris but to work collectively to take the country forward.

Mirza Shawkat, director of UN convention, Department of Environment, said the Paris agreement was an excellent achievement while NGOs earlier criticised the agreement, saying Bangladesh should not have accepted it.

Dr Ahsan Uddin, executive director, Centre for Global Change, said the Paris agreement was nothing but a big illusion.

Actually Bangladesh achieved nothing out of this agreement; so Bangladesh should prepare to fight climate change with its own resources, he said.

Rezaul Karim Chowdhury, executive director of Coast Trust, said the agreement closed the opportunity of getting compensation forever because it did not recognise compensation.

Rashed Chowdhury, a Bangladeshi scientist working as chief scientific officer of ENSO Climate Prediction Centre, said Bangladesh should build capacity of predicting extreme climatic events.

Abdul Qayyum, associate editor of Prothom Alo, moderated the session while Matiur Rahman, the editor and publisher of Prothom Alo, was also present.

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