With the aim of reducing harmful carbon emissions and increasing awareness about environment protection, a discussion titled “Climate Adda” was held at Brac Center on Green Office Day on Tuesday.

Speakers at the event said youths should come forward to reduce harmful carbon emissions and increase awareness about environmental protection. 

They should be made aware about the protection of the environment, and effective action should be taken in this regard, they added.

Dr Md Liakath Ali, director of the Climate Change Program of Brac and Brac International, moderated the discussion.

Chairman of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change Saber Hossain Chowdhury; Nahim Razzak MP; and Advocate Syeda Rizwana Hasan, member, Brac Governing Board, and also executive director, Bangladesh Environmental Lawyers Association (BELA), participated in the chat.

Saber Hossain Chowdhury said: “At the COP summit this year, we discussed a critical gap. That is, a lack of faith or trust. We will not be able to proceed in any direction towards the future if wealthy nations do not honour their promises. Developed nations assert that they donated $80 billion to us last year. However, based on information from unbiased organizations, it is not even $20 million.”

Nahim Razzaq said: “Carbon footprint is something we can all play a part in controlling. Especially those who are young need to be included in this process. National consensus and guidelines are needed.” 

He recommended adding a chapter on climate change to textbooks and curriculums.

Advocate Syeda Rizwana Hasan said: “We have a lot to do from individual to social to state levels. We can emphasize the use of public transport over the use of private transport. Then the role of the government should be to improve the public transport system. Bicycle lanes should be introduced to encourage the use of bicycles. Young people should come forward with proper leadership. Youths have to raise questions on the safety of food and air.”

To sum up the discussion, Dr Md Liakath Ali said: “Brac has been at the forefront of reducing the organization’s carbon footprint. One of the major initiatives successfully taken up in recent times is a ban on single-use plastic within the organization.” 

At the end of the discussion, in the question and answer session, the young people present told the negotiators that they want to work but it is not possible without training and funding. 

They said: “Discussion is happening, but a solution is necessary. We have to start working using our own funds instead of expecting money from foreigners. In that case, youths will be useful.”

Brac officials, members of Brac’s Youth Platform and alumni of Aamra Notun Network (ANN) under the Brac Youth Platform participated in the program.

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