A sensitization seminar for media on transport sector and related issues in Pakistan was organized under the Pakistan Sustainable Transport(PAKSTRAN) Project here in Karachi today.
The event aimed at effectively engaging media to report on the social, economic/developmental and environmental issues related to transport sector in Pakistan. It was attended by select representative of print and electronic media in Pakistan.
Speaking on the occasion, Mr. Mahmood Akhtar Cheema, Country Representative, IUCN Pakistan mentioned that IUCN as a partner in the PAKSTRAN project has initiated several activities to raise awareness about the issues related to transport sector in Pakistan, through adopting a strategic approach. He said the role the media is playing for raising awareness is considered crucial to educating people about the concept of sustainable transportation. Mr. Cheema added that the enhanced awareness about sustainable transport is expected to eventually pave the way for planning and development decisions that are to be taken in Pakistan regarding sustainable urban transport concepts, thus influencing the achievement of PAKSTRAN’s objective.
In his remarks Dr. Saleem Janjua, National Project Manager, PAKSTRAN, Ministry of Water and Power, Government of Pakistan said that the objective of PAKSTRAN project is to reduce the growth of energy consumption and reduce emission and add toward the global efforts in mitigating the emission and improve the urban development. While talking about the event, Dr.Janjua said that the tool of awareness raising has been made integral part of PAKSTRAN and it is expected that effective involvement of media would help in promoting understanding about the sustainability concepts related to urban transport sector, which can influence a wider cross section of the society. Dr. Saleem further mentioned that the focus of all awareness raising activities under the project should be towards a gradual behaviour change in order to cause a shift to sustainable mode of transportation.
While speaking at the event, Mr. Muhammad Aqib Uddin, an eminent specialist in the subject stressed on the need of having an integrated transport system for cities like Karachi and Lahore as to catalyse and harness economic growth and deflating social pressures arising as a result of crippling and unsustainable transport system. He said that a development model for transport sector that aims only at infrastructure development would not be sustainable in longer term.
While making a presentation on the impact of transport sector on environment in Pakistan, Dr. Raza Mehdi mentioned that the road transport is the largest source of air pollution in Pakistan. Prof. Dr. Shabbar Ali, Chairman, NED University of Engineering and Technology made a presentation on sustainable transport system and said that there is need to adopt the technology which serves our needs. He stressed on integrated mass transit system as a main solution and the way forward.
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