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Finance minister: Promote green energy for safe planet

  • Published at 10:27 pm March 10th, 2019
Planning Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal
File photo of Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal Mahmood Hossain Opu/Dhaka Tribune

Bangladesh lost 26% of its coastal land due to salt intrusion in last 40 years

Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal has strongly advocated promoting green, clean and renewable energy to present a healthy and safe planet before the future generation.

“We’ve inherited a beautiful planet and it’s our commitment to leave a healthy and safe planet for our future generation. We have no other alternative…we want green, clean and renewable energy,” he said yesterday.

The finance minister said this while inaugurating a two-day seminar on clean energy along with an exhibition focusing on energy efficiency, renewable energy, green building and green finance at the Bangabandhu International Conference Centre (BICC).

The mega green energy event has been organized by Infrastructure Development Company Limited (IDCOL), a state-owned non-banking financial institution.

Energy Adviser to the Prime Minister Dr Towfiq-e-Elahi Chowdhury; Senior Secretary to the Power Division Dr Ahmad Kaikaus; Economic Relations Division (ERD) Secretary Monowar Ahmed and ADB Country Director Manmohan Parkash also spoke among others.

Executive Director and CEO of IDCOL Mamood Malik gave the address of welcome.

Kamal said climate change is a subject to serious threat for humankind due to carbon emission from fossil fuels. “Around 80% of energy is coming from fossils that are degrading the environment and everybody around the world has been suffering from it.”

Urging all to change the methodology of producing energy, he said, “We have to work for green energy… We need renewable energy to save humanity, to save earth, to tackle climate change.”

The finance minister also requested all to raise loud voice against those countries which are emitting carbon to reduce carbon emission with a view to saving the climate for the future generation.

Citing that the air bumps during flights are likely to increase by 25% by 2025 due to climate change, he said, “The slogan today is we want green energy and this is the only solution. We want renewable, we want hydropower,”

Citing the extent of climate change impacts through listing some incidents in Taiwan, South Africa and the melting of a gigantic iceberg, almost the same size of Scotland, in the North Atlantic, Kamal said Bangladesh is also experiencing the climate change impacts as the country had lost 26% of its coastal land due to salt intrusion over the last 40 years.

Speakers at the program say

Dr Towfiq said access to energy has been more than double in the last one decade. He stressed solar power, green energy to protect the environment, climate from further destruction.

“Climate change mitigation is not our responsibility as developed countries are responsible for those for producing more carbon emission,” he said urging all to meet climate challenges for healthy life in the world.

Dr Ahmad said energy is being produced from fossils for the last two centuries whereas energy from renewable is being generated for last 50 years and it is playing a role to produce 20% of energy.

“We should put emphasis on solar energy, hydro energy, and solar economy to achieve 8 percent GDP growth,” he added.

The objective of the event is to create a platform for energy practitioners to exchange knowledge, ideas and address challenges through interactive discussions on various aspects of clean energy which include technology, market development, financing as well as policy and regulatory matters.

Some 400 experts, regulators, policy makers, financiers, energy practitioners as well as business houses from around the world are participating in the seminar.

Bangladesh’s smart investment opportunity 

According to a report of International Finance Corporation (IFC), Bangladesh has $132 billion of climate smart investment opportunity from 2018 to 2030 in renewable energy, energy efficiency and green building.

Among others, Powertrack Group, Seed Bangla Agro Ltd, Rahimafrooz Renewable Energy Ltd, Panna Rural Development Foundation, Rimso Foundation, Hamco Corporation Ltd, Bangladesh Petrochemical Company Ltd, Energypac Electronics Ltd, Kirti Solar, Bright Solar Ltd are attending the event as exhibitors.

The exhibition will remain open for all from 9:30 am to 8:00 pm.

Ernst and Young LLP is the Knowledge Partner of the summit while Solar Quarter is its Networking Partner.