LAHORE: The Environment Protection Department (EPD) and Punjab University’s College of Earth and Environmental Science (CEES) organised a seminar to mark the World Environment Day at Al-Razi Hall on Wednesday.
The day is observed every year on June 5 to promote awareness on importance of preserving biodiversity, need to identify problems relating to environment and ways and means to take corrective actions. Theme for this year’s day is ‘Small Island Developing States (SIDS)’.
Speakers at the seminar stressed the need for ensuring individual participation to save environment.
Provincial Minister for Environment Col (r) Shuja Khanzada was the chief guest while EPD Secretary Muhammad Anwar Rasheed and Punjab University Vice Chancellor Dr Mujahid Kamran were guests of honour.
Environment Protection Agency (EPA) Director General Farooq Hameed Sheikh, CEES Principal Prof Dr Firdoos Bareen, Assistant Professor M Kamran, EIA Director Naseemur Rehman, District Officer Younas Zahid and a large number of students were present.
Dr Firdoos Bareen highlighted the importance of the theme of the day. CEES students presented three documentaries on prevailing environmental changes and after-effects of rapid climate changes.
Addressing the seminar, Minister Shuja Khanzada stressed that present environmental challenges should be dealt on a war footing besides calling for holding such seminars and events on a regular basis.
He appreciated students and organisers for conducting the event and called it an effective step towards achieving a better environment. He said that climatic changes in our country could damage us because our glaciers were melting quickly and water pollution was increasing rapidly.
Because of non-availability of storage capacity and also because of absence of dams, he said, natural water resources were being wasted every year and if this practice continued, the next generation would face severe problems due to scarcity, rather absence of natural water.
He said that Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif took various initiatives to store water in low-lying areas so that underground water level could be maintained. He also invited the students and teachers to come to his office with ideas and projects to save the environment.
Secretary Rasheed said that every individual had to come forward and join hands with each other for betterment of environment. He said that a single department could not deliver 100 percent until every individual started playing his or her part.
He said that environmental challenges were increasing day by day and that these challenges could be controlled if every individual managed his requirements as per his or her needs.
He appreciated the CEES students for their documentaries and said such videos should be filmed regularly and that the EPD would sponsor them.
Earlier, a speech and documentary competition was also held while a skit was also presented to highlight the importance of safe environment.
In the end, Vice Chancellor Dr Kamran distributed shields among participants of speech and documentary competition. Dr Kamran also presented shield to Minister Shuja Khanzada, Secretary Rasheed and EPA Director General Farooq Hameed Sheikh.
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