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Call for promoting renewable energy

Published : 23 Sep 2022 09:26 PM

Young Bangladeshi climate activists have called upon the government and the investors to move away from the fossil fuel import dependency. 

 They also called for stopping environmentally harmful activities through promoting the increased use of renewable energy.

 The climate activists also raised the demand of ensuring climate justice for a better and livable world.

 They made the call at a rally held in front of the National Press Club in the capital on Friday (September 23) as part of the global climate strike. Fridays for Future Bangladesh and two other platforms working on climate change organised the rally.

 The climate activists at the rally said that despite contributing less than 0.47 percent of global carbon emissions, Bangladesh, a country of 180 million people, is one of the countries most affected by the effects of climate change and among those most vulnerable to climate change. 

 As global warming melts Himalayan glaciers and polar ice caps, sea levels rise and the risk of deadly disasters increases. Floods, cyclones, droughts, extreme rains, river erosion and soil salinity are increasing in Bangladesh due to the climate change.

 Mentioning that Bangladesh is suffering in various ways, they also said that about 17 percent of areas in Bangladesh will go underwater by 2050 due to the rise in sea level. As a result, two crore people of the country will be displaced.

 However, 27 per cent of people in the coastal areas of Bangladesh are currently at risk of flooding. This risk of coastal flooding could increase to 35 percent this century. At present, floods cause a loss of assets of about three thousand crore of taka in the coastal areas every year. About ten thousand crore worth of assets were damaged in cyclones.

 Vice President and Country Director of The Hunger Project,  Dr Badiul Alam Majumdar expressed solidarity with the young climate activists and said that nature and environment must be saved from destruction. A collective initiative is needed in this regard. Youths can play a vital role on the issue, he added.

 Dr Badiul Alam Majumdar called on developed countries to quickly formulate and implement effective strategies to provide financial compensation for the lives and property of climate-vulnerable countries and provide funding for priority adaptation measures.

 Coordinator of Youth Net for Climate Justice Sohanur Rahman said that the climate crisis has become a major disaster for our country and the world. Ending dependency on fossil fuels and encouraging the use of renewable energy for the future is essential to overcoming the climate crisis, he added.

 He also said that proper compensation needs to be ensured from the polluting countries.

 Director of the International Center for Climate Change and Development Dr Salimul Haque said that it is clear that polluting countries are responsible for the loss of life and property due to human-caused climate change. Both governments and fossil fuel companies are responsible for this. They must be held accountable for that. It is time to face the real culprits behind the climate crisis. They have deliberately destroyed nature and environment for the sake of profit, he added.

 Chief coordinator of Save Future Bangladesh Nayon Sorkar said that the effects of climate change are visible around the world. “We are currently in the midst of a major crisis, which is the climate crisis. World leaders are prolonging the climate crisis by not taking urgent climate action. Bangladesh emits less than 0.47 percent of global carbon emissions but is one of the most affected and vulnerable to climate change. Thousands of people in Bangladesh are now at risk,” he added.

 The environment and climate activist further said that the coastal region of Bangladesh is suffering in many ways. Other coastal countries are also affected. People lose their livelihoods and become refugees due to floods, cyclones or river erosion. In the last 20 years, each family in the southern part of Bangladesh has suffered an average financial loss of Tk 4,62,491 crore due to natural calamities. “We want damages now. We want climate action and climate justice,” he said