A Pakistani official concerned with environmental affairs has called on fellow developing countries to urge rich polluting countries to take the issues of climate change more seriously.

Senator Mushahid Ullah Khan, Pakistan's Federal Minister for Climate Change, made the statement on Wednesday during the national consultative workshop on environment, climate change, biodiversity, land degradation, and ozone depletion.

According to Khan, poor countries, such as Nepal, India, Bangladesh, Pakistan and other nations in the Asia-pacific region, should take a united stand against the double standard of the rich countries. He said that these developed nations should be forced to pay for causing global warming and for damaging the environment.

Khan pointed out that when climate change inevitably hits, it is the poorer countries of the world that will suffer the most, including Bangladesh, Nepal and Pakistan.

"During the last decade it is poor counties like Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh, Philippines, Honduras, Myanmar and Thailand that have been most battered by the climate change disasters including floods, storm and cyclones," the Pakistani minister said.

Khan argued that developing countries are left on their own to deal with the adverse effects of climate change, such as cyclones, floods, hurricanes, river erosion, land sliding and the imminent rise of sea-level.

He said that developed countries, on the other hand, exacerbate the pace of global warming by releasing more carbon emissions.

The Pakistani minister added that wealthy nations exploited the world's natural resources, particularly forest, land and water resources, in order to gain substantial economic growth.

Despite the efforts of developed countries to push for green and sustainable plans and urge poor nations to help protect the environment, Khan said that these wealthy nations themselves are not serious about following their own agenda.

The minister also called these rich countries "hypocrites" in their plans to help poor countries in addressing the ill effects of climate change.

Khan explained that rich countries should not see the developing countries' demand for loss and damage compensation as a major issue if indeed the affluent nations are serious in addressing the effects of climate change.

Compensation for loss and damages can be used to help improve efforts in reducing global carbon emissions and bolster the adaptation of developing countries to climate change.

The Ministry of Climate Change and Global Environment Facility (GEF) arranged the workshop. The organization's goal is to create a partnership among the 183 attending countries in order to address environmental issues in the world.

Photo: Tim J Keegan | Flickr 

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