Climate change is one of the most pressing challenges facing our globe today. As the world grapples with the need to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and transition to a low-carbon economy, the role of infrastructure cannot be overstated. Infrastructure, including transportation, energy, and urban development, is critical in shaping the climate future. The forthcoming infrastructure, driven by the urgent need to address climate change, is being designed and built with a focus on sustainability, resilience, and environmental stewardship.
According to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), approximately 75% of the greenhouse gas emissions that are warming the Earth's atmosphere and harming the environment result from human activity, including burning fossil fuels for energy and transportation. Infrastructure plays a crucial part in the global effort to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and move towards a low-carbon economy. Infrastructure, which includes energy, urban growth, and transportation, is crucial in determining our country's climate in the future. The upcoming infrastructure is being planned and constructed with an emphasis on sustainability, resilience, and environmental stewardship, as supported by data and scientific evidence, motivated by the urgent need to combat climate change.
The International Energy Agency transportation significantly contributes to global greenhouse gas emissions, accounting for approximately 24% of energy-related CO2 emissions. However, a trend towards climate-friendly transportation options is growing, with electric vehicles (EVs) gaining momentum. Despite challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, global electric car sales increased by 43% in 2020. Governments, cities, and private entities are investing in EV charging infrastructure, promoting sustainable transportation modes, and incentivising EV adoption. Companies like Tesla, Rivian, Walmart, and Shell are leading the way in developing EVs and investing in EV charging infrastructure, highlighting the increasing commitment of businesses toward sustainable transportation and low-carbon alternatives in the transportation sector.
Electricity infrastructure is also going through a considerable makeover to become more environmentally friendly. Fossil fuels are being phased out in favour of renewable energy sources, including solar, wind, and hydropower. As a result, the capacity for renewable power has quadrupled since 2000, according to data from the Renewable Energy Policy Network for the 21st Century (REN21). In 2018, renewable energy accounted for 26% of the world's electricity generation. According to statistics from numerous energy and environmental organisations, the future infrastructure will concentrate on constructing more renewable energy infrastructure, increasing access to clean and dependable energy, and integrating renewable energy into the grid. Maintaining a reliable and robust energy supply entails investing in sizable solar and wind farms, distributed energy systems, and energy storage technology. For example, technology giants like Google and Amazon have significantly invested in renewable energy projects to power their operations with 100% renewable energy.
Urban development, a key infrastructure component, is influenced by climate-friendly ideas in the forthcoming infrastructure. Compact, walkable, and transit-oriented communities are prioritised, focusing on sustainable urban planning and design. According to data from urban planning and environmental authorities, green infrastructure, such as green roofs, urban forests, and permeable pavements, is integrated into urban spaces to improve air quality, manage stormwater, and increase resistance to climate impacts. The following infrastructure also includes climate adaptation measures to protect against dangers associated with the climate, such as flooding, sweltering weather, and sea level rise.
Climate change is a growing concern in Pakistan, as the country is highly vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, such as extreme weather events, water scarcity, and sea level rise. According to a study by the Asian Development Bank, Pakistan could experience losses equivalent to 6-8% of its GDP due to climate change by 2050.
The Pakistani government has initiated several programs and policies to promote climate resilience and adaptation in response to this challenge. For instance, the government has launched the Green Pakistan Program, which aims to increase forest cover by planting 100 million trees over five years.
Furthermore, Pakistan has also made significant progress in developing renewable energy sources, such as wind and solar power, in reducing its reliance on fossil fuels and mitigating greenhouse gas emissions. The country has set a target of generating 30% of its electricity from renewable sources by 2030.
TPL Properties' emphasis on sustainability and green building practices is commendable. By developing climate-friendly infrastructure that helps reduce carbon emissions and mitigate climate change impacts, TPLP has contributed to Pakistan's efforts to achieve its climate goals and build a more resilient future. In particular, TPLP's Centrepoint project, a 28-story modern skyscraper that was completed in 2013 and subsequently acquired by a leading bank in Pakistan for its head office in May 2021. TPLP's commitment to sustainability and climate resilience in Pakistan is a positive example for other developers. With the continued support of government policies and initiatives, such as the Green Pakistan Program, Pakistan can build a more sustainable and climate-resilient future.
Globally the upcoming infrastructure improvements align with the principles of the circular economy, which prioritise reducing, reusing, and recycling resources to minimise waste and enhance resource efficiency. Companies like IKEA and Patagonia are known for their commitment to circular economy concepts, incorporating recycled materials into their products and promoting recycling and reuse at the end of their lifecycles. Coca-Cola has also set a target to collect and recycle one bottle or can for each one they sell by 2030, demonstrating their dedication to circular economy practices. Additionally, the forthcoming infrastructure prioritises sustainable materials and construction practices, such as using low-carbon building materials, adopting green building certifications, and implementing sustainable construction techniques. These efforts by these companies and others are leading the way in integrating circular economy principles into their business models and promoting sustainability in their operations.
The upcoming infrastructure is poised to be pivotal in shaping a climate-friendly future. Its focus on sustainability, resilience, and environmental stewardship is critical to worldwide endeavours to combat climate change. By adopting electric vehicles and renewable energy sources, integrating circular economy principles, and promoting sustainable urban development, the forthcoming infrastructure leads towards a more sustainable and resilient world. As we tackle the pressing issue of climate change, the importance of infrastructure cannot be overstated, and its climate-friendly approach serves as a beacon of hope for a collective future.