Climate-smart projects: The smart way forward
All infrastructural projects in Bangladesh should be climate-smart as the country aims to achieve the goals committed to the UN in reducing carbon emission, said officials and development experts yesterday.
Bangladesh committed to reducing 21.85 percent carbon emission by 2030 and support global initiatives to limit global warming to 1.5-2 degree-Celsius at the pre-industrial level.
Major areas of the infrastructure projects should focus on renewable energy, transport and waste management. Authorities need to see how eco-friendly transports, including rail and waterways, can be better utilised, they said.
The speakers observed that all the ministries, private sector, civil society organisations need to have plans and design projects that have climate components aimed at improving efficiency.
The observations came at a seminar titled "Scope of climate-smart Public-Private Partnership in Bangladesh and COP-26 Discussion", organised by the Public-Private Partnership Authority (PPPA) in partnership with the UNDP at a city hotel.
State Minister for Public Administration Farhad Hossain said Bangladesh is becoming an industrial hub and the industries can play a major role by installing effluent treatment plants and adopting energy-efficient technologies.
Solar power, wind power, hydropower, electric cars -- all options of renewable energy need to be explored, he said.
Mostafa Kamal, secretary of the environment ministry, said introducing electric cars, satellite towns and reducing traffic congestions are some of the most important areas where more investments would be required to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
The PPPA as a coordinating body needs to have specific models of partnership, which are sustainable and beneficial for all stakeholders, he said.
UNDP Resident Representative Sudipto Mukherjee said it is not always right to think of mega-projects but also climate-resilient projects of small and medium-scale involving large sections of the population.
Bangladesh faces frequent cyclones and floods and it is important to see how the damages to these disasters, especially to the infrastructure, can be further reduced, he said.
British High Commissioner to Bangladesh Robert C Dickson said the foreign direct investment is crucial for Bangladesh as it graduates by 2026. The PPPA can attract lots of investors provided that the investment climate is improved.
Prof Saleemul Huq, director of the International Centre for Climate Change and Development; Danish Ambassador to Bangladesh Winnie Estrup Petersen; and Turkish Ambassador Mustafa Osman Turan, among others, spoke at the seminar chaired by PPPA CEO Sultana Afroz.