Environmental panel in Erbil warns of climate change impact on Kurdistan and Iraq

Environmental panel in Erbil warns of climate change impact on Kurdistan and Iraq

Shafaq News / Environment and water Experts in the Kurdistan Region warned, of serious dangers threatening the water security and environment in the Region.

Shafaq News agency's correspondent reported that the Centre for Environmental Studies in the University of Kurdistan (CES) held today its second panel, entitled "Sustainable Energy: Policies, Activism and the Private Sector", to discuss ideas and ways toward an environmental society in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq.

The president of the University of Kurdistan-Hewler, Bill Rammell, said in a speech that many factors contributed to the current environmental crisis, including the genocide, wars, and the chemical attack that the region was subjected to.

He added that the environment has been damaged by 80% around the world, noting that Iraq and the Kurdistan Region are ranked as the fifth most affected country by climate change, which prompted the university to play a key role in this regard, by supporting their environment-related projects.

For his part, Academic Dana Mawloud stressed the need for financial allocations that cover the coming 20 years, to face the repercussions of climate change and benefit from surface water instead of groundwater.

Mawloud told Shafaq News agency that Iraq needs artificial ponds to collect rainwater to supply the middle and southern governorates.

The Chairman of the Environmental Protection and Conservation department in the Kurdistan Region, Abdulrahman Siddiq, said that Iraq and the Kurdistan Region have a 10-year Environmental plan, and its implementation already began in 2015, but still needs government support.

"Iraq has been invited to attend an environmental conference, in Ivory Coast. The Iraqi government had sent one person to represent Iraq in the conference, instead of sending a whole delegation", he noted.

"The President of the Kurdistan Region, Nechirvan Barzani, will soon organize a conference to be attended by 500 Academy, to discuss environmental investments", he said.

Abdulsalam Madani, the head of the Rwanga foundation, said that the environmental situation in Iraq represents a major challenge that must be prioritized by the authorities in Iraq, and the organizations, and make sure there is a strategic plan to address it.

Rwanga foundation is working, according to Madani, in four main fields, one of which concerns environmental issues; several initiatives were launched, including an awareness campaign about rationalizing water consumption and renewable energy.

The foundation also prepared solar energy and reforestation programs in the Kurdistan Region, and work is ongoing to cover all Iraqi lands.

The President Adviser for scientific affairs, Bahram Khidr Mawloud, said in a speech during the panel that if decisions issued by environmental authorities are mandatory, it will be easier to address the situation, stressing the need to resort to scientific research and strategic plans.

The conference shed light on a series of environmental issues, including the repercussions of climate change on the Kurdistan Region, sustainable energy environment and policies, as well as the role of NGOs and the private sector in this regard.

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