September 01, 2021
Contact: Amy Christianson
For Immediate Release
U.S. CONSULATE GENERAL KARACHI PARTNERS WITH BALOCHISTAN’S AGRICULTURAL COMMUNITY TO FIGHT CLIMATE CHANGE WITH BIOTECHNOLOGY
Karachi – The U.S. Consulate General in Karachi partnered with the District Agriculture Headquarter at Lasbela to host a seminar on agricultural biotechnology and climate change on August 26. The seminar brought together leading landowners and farmers to discuss their role in climate-smart farming practices and supporting agricultural innovation in Pakistan. The Deputy Director General of the Agriculture Extension Balochistan delivered keynote remarks, saying “agriculture is one of the most important sectors in Balochistan, but we need more innovation, including agricultural biotechnology, to increase crop yields in a sustainable way.”
Dr. Muhammad Fahim Abbas in the Department of Plant Pathology at the Faculty of Agriculture Lasbela University of Agriculture, Water & Marine Sciences presented on Pakistan’s experience with climate change and agricultural biotechnology, including applications for potatoes and bananas. He said, “the role of biotechnology in agriculture is one of the most reliable answers to mitigate climate change through the process of energy-efficient farming, carbon sequestration, reduced synthetic fertilizer usage, and application of nano-biotechnology.”
The seminar also included remarks from Dr. Evanega, a research professor in Cornell University’s Department of Global Development and the Director of the Alliance for Science. Dr. Evanega said “biotechnology and genetic engineering will be a key tool in our efforts to produce the food that we need while also addressing climate change.” Dr. Nicholas Kalaitzandonakes, a professor at the University of Missouri, presented on the importance of agricultural biotechnology for the agricultural sector, saying “studies show that biotechnology improves farm profitability by 50 percent” and that adoption of biotechnology is “driven by this profitability, which supports farms, the agricultural sector, and the economy as a whole.”
For more information on the U.S. Department of State’s engagement on climate and environment, please see www.state.gov/policy-issues/climate-and-environment/.