Pakistan highlights the Billion Tree Tsunami at the UN

New York, 30 March, 2019

Pakistan projected its flagship project “Billion Tree Tsunami”, as one of its flagship efforts to arrest climate change at a High Level event on the subject organized by the President of the UN General Assembly.

The Project, the UN was told, had become the first entity under the global “Bonn Challenge” to surpass the pledge of restoring 3.48 million hectors and created half a million green jobs. It has now been transformed into a nation-wide “10 Billion Tree Tsunami”, inaugurated by Prime Minister Imran Khan.

During the meeting, Pakistan stated that climate change, besides causing widespread devastation, threatens countries’ abilities to accomplish national priorities and achieve sustainable economic growth. It was also mentioned that Pakistan, with its contribution to the total global Green House Gas (GHG) emission limited to only 0.8%, was considered the eighth most climate vulnerable country in the world.

It was brought to the attention of the world assembly that Pakistan had faced vagaries of climate change in the form of glacial melt and widespread devastation caused by floods in 2010 and 2011 and drought in 2014.

Pakistan had taken actions in the domain of both adaptation and mitigation, which includes in disaster risk reduction, resilient agriculture, flood water utilisation for ecosystem restoration, ground water recharge, renewable energy, transportation, and town planning.

Pakistan also flagged the vital importance of climate finance. While referring to Pakistan’s adaptation needs that stood at $14 billion per annum, Pakistan called on the developed countries to fulfil their pledge of mobilising $100 billion by 2020.

Pakistan’s statement was well received, including by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), specifically praising our achievement in global “Bonn Challenge” and reforestation efforts through “10 Billion Tree Tsunami” in its own statement at the Assembly.

The High-Level Meeting on Climate and Sustainable Development for All was convened by the President of the General Assembly, Maria Fernanda Espinosa Garces on 28-29 March 2019. The Meeting was attended by a number of high-level delegations from around the world including the Presidents of Austria, Hungary, Slovakia, and Prime Ministers of Fiji and Dominica.