STAFF REPORT KHI: The average temperature of the world has increased by 0.7 degree since the beginning of the 21th century and it may rise by 1.6 to 4.3 degrees by the end of the 21st century, Karachi University (KU) Vice-Chancellor Prof. Dr Muhammad Qaiser has this. He said this while addressing the local and international delegates gathered at the Sheikh Zayed Islamic Centre at KU for the four-day 14th national and 5th international conference of the Pakistan Botanical Society (PBS), which hosted botanists from more than 10 countries. The theme of the conference is, Climate Change and Phytodiversity: Challenges and Opportunities.
“A changing climate means changing of habitat, threatening vulnerable species consequently, which leads to their extinction,” Dr. Qaiser added. He said that humans and biodiversity face new challenges for survival due to climatic changes in the world.He further said that all the climate changes are harming animals, plants and wreak havoc on livelihoods and communities due to decrease in agricultural yield, diseases and decrease in water supply.
Unesco senior programme officer Dr Miguel Clusener-Godt emphasised on the immediate actions that needed to be taken, considering the environmental issues like floods and increasing temperatures.
National and international scientists were also present on the occasion, including former KU VC and senior botanist Prof. Dr Syed Irtifaq Ali, Pakistan Science Foundation chairperson Professor Dr M. Ashraf and ecological science advisor of Unesco, Dr Benno Boer.