As millions of Pakistanis have been facing major power shortages across the country, Green Cross Pakistan has intensified advocacy efforts to promote alternative energy solutions.
Late last month, Green Cross Pakistan and two Pakistani universities staged a seminar titled: Energy Crisis in Pakistan, Alternative Energy Solutions. Almost 50 renewable and bio-energy experts and professionals from Pakistan, Nepal and the Maldives attended the event, held in Lahore, which was co-organised with the University of Punjab in Lahore and University of Agriculture in Faisalabad.
“Availability and use of electricity and fuel is a major concern for Pakistan. People go without electricity for half of the day, even more. New, sustainable initiatives are needed to respond to the country’s energy crisis,” says Masood Ul-Haq of Green Cross Pakistan.
During the last four years, energy shortages has become a grave issue in Pakistan, and fanned public discontent. The energy crisis affects all parts of the country, where almost 70% of the population live in villages and small towns where electricity can be unavailable up to 20-24 hours per day.
“We need to increase awareness and support for new, cheap and affordable technologies in bio-energy areas, such as bio-electricity, bio-diesel and bio-liquified natural gas, along with solar and hydro energy technologies. Replanting forests could be the cheapest energy source.”
Green Cross Pakistan advocates for clean and smart energy exploration to meet sustainable consumption needs and to address climate change. Green Cross Pakistan educates communities on energy efficiency and saving energy from household to industry levels. Green Cross also provides volunteer consultations in green energy building constructions and the introduction of smart energy saving devices. Green Cross Pakistan supports bio-energy projects and works on turnkey projects to generate electricity from algae.
Green Cross Pakistan actively collaborates with public institutions on issues related to environmental degradation. Through its “Energy Diplomacy” work, Green Cross Pakistan conveys concerns to parliamentarians and urges them to legislate on issues including energy pricing and incentives to promote green technologies.
Green Cross International, founded by Mikhail Gorbachev, is an independent non-profit and nongovernmental organization working to address the inter-connected global challenges of security, poverty eradication and environmental degradation through a combination of high-level advocacy and local projects. GCI is headquartered in Geneva and has a growing network of national organisations in over 30 countries.