Inaugural Ceremony of Three Days international conference on "Tackling climate change through plant Breeding"

Federal Minister for Inter-Provincial Coordination, Mian Riaz Hussian Pirzada on stressed the need of strategies for sustainable crop production in changing climate scenario. He said this during an inaugural session of a three-day international conference titled: 'Tackling Climate Change through Plant Breeding' at Pir Mehr Ali Shah Arid Agriculture University Rawalpindi (PMAS-AAUR) on November 13, 2017.


The minister said that climate change was not only affecting human life directly also it has eminent indirect impact in terms of limited food productivity and can cause serious food shortage in future.


The conference was organised by Department of Plant Breeding and Genetics (PBG) of PMAS-AAUR with an aim to discuss the challenge posed by climate change, new scenario in crop production and revise strategies to tackle them through plant breeding approaches.


On the occasion, Prof Dr Rai Niaz Ahmad, the PMAS-AAUR vice chancellor, and Dr Muhammad Hanif, the National Weather Forecasting Centre director of Pakistan Meteorological Department (PMD), were the guest of honor. World renowned scientists from Australia, China and Pakistan of reputed universities, research institutes and deans, directors, faculty members and students of PMAS-AAUR are also participating in the conference.


The federal minister further stated that climate change was a fact that could not be denied and its effects were evident from episodes of smog or heat wave claiming hundreds of lives. He hoped that this conference would enable us to propose a viable solution and said that we must introduce strategies like improvement of crops with sustained productivity in changing climate and come forward to serve country in the manner country needs.


Prof Dr Rai Niaz Ahmad said that Pakistan was at the sixth number among countries been highly affected by climate change. "Climate change has become a global problem and posing threats to environment also it leads to bad human health and decline in production," he said.


He said that climate change also resulting in frequently extreme droughts, smog, low rainfall, short winter and long summer. "However, the effects can be coped through modernised agricultural practices. The close coordination between institutions and researchers is needed to devise strategies for tackling climate change through different techniques of plant breeding," he added.


Dr Muhammad Hanif, briefed on the seasonal temperatures, rainfall shifts and consequential food insecurity in Pakistan and said Pakistan is affected by photochemical smog also known as Bad Ozone Layer due to 10 centigrade change in temperature which is the most dangerous for human health.