‘Need to conserve vultures to fight environmental degradation’
Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz (PML-N) Senator Saleem Zia emphasised that concerted efforts on local, provincial, national and regional levels are required to prepare and implement an effective strategy for the protection and conservation of vultures as a part of fighting environmental degradation.
He was addressing a regional symposium, titled ‘Conservation and Protection of Vultures in South Asia’, on Monday, said a press release. The event was organised by BaanhnBeli and International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). Regional countries need to learn from the experiences of each other to save these precious species from extinction, said Zia.
In his opening remarks, federal climate change secretary Syed Abu Ahmad Akif said that research on the vanishing of vultures and its verification by regional countries, revealed that ‘diclofenac sodium’ (a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug) administered in the livestock was the main cause of this sudden decline in the population of vultures in South Asia.
“The Government of Pakistan realising the importance of species responded quickly and banned diclofenac production and its use in the country,” he added. The purpose of the symposium was to bring together regional vulture experts to learn from their experiences and knowledge of conservation of these essential birds in Asia. Representatives of the government, media and academia, as well as local and regional species and vulture experts from India, Bangladesh, Thailand and Nepal attended the symposium.