Former UN Secretary-General and Global Commission on Adaptation chair Ban Ki-Moon on Wednesday proposed installation of a global centre for climate change adaptation in Bangladesh as he called on Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina along with Marshall Islands President Dr Hilda C Heine, reports state-run Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha news agency.
“Bangladesh is the best teacher when comes to adaptation of climate change,” PM’s press secretary Ihsanul Karim quoted Moon as saying while he floated the proposal during the meeting with the premier.
Moon added: “You’re (Sheikh Hasina) one of the global leaders who lead the climate change issue from the fore front (and) I count on your continued commitment”.
The former UN secretary general said the proposed centre would monitor and oversee the adaptation issues particularly for the South and South-East Asian nations.
He said Bangladesh was likely to be exposed to worst wraths of climate change but yet it appeared as a model case for adaptation of climate changes.
Heine and Ban met Sheikh Hasina on the sidelines of the two-day Dhaka Meeting on climate change in a city hotel.
The Marshall Islands president highly praised as well Bangladesh for its disaster resilience and initiatives and strategies to manage catastrophes as well as adapt the adverse impact of climate change.
Both of them cyclones with higher intensities in recent years including the Fani claimed only few human lives compared to that of the 1970 cyclone that had claimed 10 lakh lives and 1991 cyclone when 1.5 lakh people were killed.
They highly acknowledged appropriate and timely government measures to minimize the damage and disaster tragedies.
During the meeting, Moon recalled the sweet memories of visiting Bangladesh several times even before his appointment as the UN Secretary General.
The Prime Minister said Bangladesh contribution to carbon emission was very little as the factor was the major culprit for climate changes, but yet the country by now did much to reduce the emission.
The Prime Minister said Bangladesh’s Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman had showed the path of climate change adaptation through building multi-purpose cyclone centres after the country’s 1971 Independence taking the lessons from the 1970 catastrophic cyclone.
She said Bangabandhu had built a green belt in Cox’s Bazar to reduce disaster damages and some 45,000 volunteers were trained up at that time to handle any sort of natural disaster.
Bangabandhu, she said, had built structures called ‘Mujib Killas’ to save human as well as cattle lives.
The prime minister said following Bangabandhu’s footsteps her government was tirelessly working to overcome the vulnerabilities and create adaptation strategies.
Foreign Minister Dr A.K. Abdul Momen, Environment, Forest and Climate Change Minister Md Shahab Uddin, PM’s Principal Secretary Md Nojibur Rahman and Principal Coordinator on SDGs Affairs at the PMO Abul Kalam Azad were present during the meeting.