Bandar Seri Begawan - The current generation is not living a lifestyle friendly to environmental sustainability and it must not be seen as a burden but instead should secure a new mindset for climate change.
This observation was made by Dr Raman Letchumanan of the Asean Secretariat during Asean+3 Youth Environment Forum held at the Indera Kayangan Ballroom at the Empire Hotel and Country Club.
The forum kicked off with presentations delivered by three invited speakers and will continue for three days until April 25 where in the next few days, over 100 youth participants from Asean countries will take part in presentations, discussions and an exercise conducted by Dr Raman prior to the closing ceremony on Sunday (April 25).
The first speaker was Dr Raman who spoke on 'Sustainable Development in Asean: Challenges and Opportunities'. One of the topics discussed in his presentation was the Asean agreement on Transboundary Haze Pollution, which aimed to prevent, monitor and mitigate land, and forest fires to control the transboundary haze pollution through concerted national efforts, regional and international cooperation.
A few measures included in the agreement are preparation, capacity building and public awareness, national and joint regional emergency response. Forest fires and haze are the most serious environmental issues in this region where over 10 Asian countries have been affected, said Dr Letchumanan.
He said the impact of natural climate change is not only imposed on the environment but other factors as well such as disaster management, human development, health, economic growth, political and human security, to name a few. Thus, he implies that it is evident the impact of climate change multiplies and plays the domino effect leading to numerous other damages.
Another issue that was brought up during the presentation was the failure of the Bali Action Plan, introduced in the t 1N Climate Change 2007 conference where the agreement to obtain an environmental initiative designed to reach a secure climate future was not met.
The second presentation was entitled 'Climate Change and Vulnerabilities Assessment of SEA region to Climate Change' by Ms Herminia A Francisco, International Research Development Centre (IRDC).
Meanwhile, in an interview with Dr Raman Letchumanan, he stated his opinion on the Heart of Borneo initiative, "The governments have agreed they should take collective agreement and organise an action plan. For now, we need to focus on finding more resources in terms of fmancial and so on. Thus, this is where we need to promote the initiatives to international donors."
Ms Francisco stated that the two general actions that can be taken to tackle climate change are mitigation and adaptation. Mitigation is by means of reducing the emission of greenhouse gases while adaptation refers to action taken by individuals or a system to take advantage of current and projected climate change and impact.
Thus, adaptation plays a role in decreasing the vulnerability of a system and increases its resilience to impact. She further stated that the three areas that contribute to the vulnerability of climate change are climatic hazards, sensitivity and adaptive capacity.
She revealed that a vast amount of support would be needed for adaptation to take place. According to the World Bank, an estimated USD 1 0-40 billion is needed for new infrastructure alone.
And taken from UNDP Human Development report, a total of USD86 billion per year is required for adaptation by 2015. "However, committed adaptation funds are limited and uncertain," said Ms Herminia.
The third speaker, Professor Mario Tabucanon from United Nations University- Institute of Advanced Studies, delivered a presentation on 'Education fur sustainable development: roles of higher education institutions and regional centres of expertise" in which he gave a brief introduction on linked Nations University.
The mission oldie university is to address pressing global problems that are the concerns of I IN, its people as well as member states. It promotes learning for policy making to meet the challenges of sustainable development.
Tabucanon highlighted higher education institutions can adopt a positive role in the education thr sustainable development by reforming curricula, reorient research and integrate or mainstream sustainable development philosophy in their studies.
The event was concluded with a presentation by Mr Kenneth Wong who spoke on the role of youths as big part to combat against climate change. -- Courtesy of Borneo Bulletin
Return to the list <<<<<