Energy sector experts stressed the need to give equal weight to the country’s non-traditional security challenges such as the energy and environmental crisis to ensure national security.
Speaking at a webinar on Friday entitled “Non-traditional security challenges – energy and environmental crisis”, they believed that by tackling energy and environmental challenges, Pakistan could strengthen its overall national security paradigm .
Sustainable Development Policy Institute (SDPI) Board Chairman Shafqat Kakakhel said the link between climate change, energy and security is well established.
According to him, energy challenges and the environmental crisis can slow down global economic development.
Climate change and the energy crisis could be tackled by switching to renewable and clean energies, he stressed.
“Thousands of factories had to be closed due to the energy crisis and the government had to adopt coal-based energy,” he said. “Now we have started to realize that the solution to the environmental and climate crisis lies in the development and deployment of clean and renewable energies. “
Speaking on the occasion, SDPI Executive Director Abid Qayyum Suleri called for efforts to address the energy crisis in a way that can also address climate change issues.
The two issues were intertwined and added to non-traditional security challenges, which also included food security, human security and others, he said.
Suleri believed that the government was prioritizing energy and environmental challenges and that it should focus on improving the power transmission and distribution system. “There is a need to introduce small hydropower projects and a solar power mechanism in remote areas with power shortages,” he said. “By strengthening the institutional framework on energy and environmental challenges and introducing clean technologies, the government can add value to efforts to tackle non-traditional security challenges.
World Bank energy expert Ermeena Malik discussed the general framework adopted around the world to assess the modern energy system.
“The three main factors in the matrix are energy availability, energy affordability and energy sustainability,” she said.
“All energy projects and assessments are essentially based on these factors and they play a fundamental role in the energy supply systems of countries around the world.”
Anything that has an impact on these three components compromises the country’s energy security, she said, adding that the three components have strong links.
She called for increased investment in sustainable and renewable energy, adding that it was important to work on the transmission grid, transmission infrastructure and improving transmission capacity.
“Regions like Balochistan have immense potential for renewable energies, but they are not being exploited. However, in Sindh, wind resources have been exploited to some extent, ”she said.
“It is important to pay attention to the country’s transmission system.”
SDPI associate researcher Hina Alam underscored the need to tackle the energy and environmental crisis given current human security challenges.
Climate Change Ministry’s Director General of Environment and Climate Change, Muhammad Irfan Tariq, said non-traditional security threats were quite visible, but overlooked or not seen through the prism of politicians .