Islamabad, November 14, 2016 – On Saturday, the Pakistan-U.S. Alumni Network (PUAN) launched a three-day international climate change conference “Changing Minds for Climate Change” in Islamabad. More than 250 alumni of U.S. government-sponsored exchange programs from across Pakistan and South, Central and East Asia gathered in Islamabad for the event, which was jointly sponsored by the U.S. Embassy in Islamabad, United States Educational Foundation in Pakistan and PUAN.
The Government of Pakistan’s Senator Mushahid Hussain Sayed, Secretary, Senate Standing Committee on Climate Change, Samina Baig, Pakistan’s first female to summit Mount Everest and the Seven Summits attended the conference’s opening ceremony to kick off a program of interactive workshops, panel sessions, keynote speeches, and community outreach events. The conference brought together climate change professionals, activists, students, teachers, and policy makers, to share knowledge and experiences.
American Ambassador David Hale addressed the conference participants: “No one country can tackle climate change alone, we must all work together. Governments and scientists, businesspeople and civil society must harness every aspect of a nation’s resources to address this global crisis,” he said.
The United States, along with partner nations around the world including Pakistan, is working to reach common ground on the climate agenda. Notably, Pakistan has recently made great progress on the path to adopting the Paris Agreement. Pakistan has also agreed to an amendment to curb greenhouse gases (hydrofluorocarbons/HFCs). What’s more, the United States and Pakistan are working together to encourage private sector investment in new clean energy generation (such as wind, solar, and hydro) through technical assistance, grants for transmission infrastructure, and financing.
Through USAID, the Department of Energy, and our national laboratories, the Clean Energy Partnership now includes technical assistance for energy efficiency in support of Pakistan’s climate goals. Finally, the U.S. Government and Pakistan have been working to support the Center for Advanced Studies in Energy at National University of Science and Technology (NUST) in Islamabad, and its satellite center at University of Engineering and Technology in Peshawar, together with Arizona State University, with a focus on renewable and alternative sources of energy.
The United States invests approximately PRK 419 crore annually in exchange programs for Pakistani citizens and sends more than 1,300 Pakistanis to the United States each year to participate in academic and professional exchange programs. PUAN is the alumni network of these students and professionals who have participated in U.S. government-sponsored exchange programs. With more than 19,000 alumni across Pakistan, PUAN is one of the largest alumni networks in the world.
PUAN regularly organizes events across Pakistan, including service projects, leadership training, roundtable discussions, and community engagement activities. To find out more about PUAN and the conference, visit: http://www.facebook.com/pakalumni and http://www.pakusalumninetwork.com
November 14, 2016
Contact: U.S. Embassy Public Affairs Section (051-201-5427, 051-201-4423)