Tag Archives: Soil

PSP chairman Mustafa Kamal, nine other people were charged in the land use case | Instant News

An accountability court on Saturday framed charges against Party chairman Pak Sarzameen Syed Mustafa Kamal and nine others in a case relating to the alleged illegal use of a commercial plot of land in the upscale neighborhood of Clifton Karachi to build a multi-storey building.

The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) has filed a referral for Kamal, then district coordinating officer Fazlur Rehman, then district executive officer Iftikhar Qaimkhani, then district officer Mumtaz Haider, then additional district officer Syed Nishat Ali, then sub-registrar Clifton II Nazir Zardari and five builders, including Muhammad Dawood, Muhammad Yaqoob, Muhammad Irfan and Muhammad Rafiq.

Meanwhile, the judge halved the case against one of the real estate developers who allegedly fled overseas, and issued a perpetual warrant for his arrest.

For the defendant’s indictment, Accountability Court III judge Dr Sher Bano Karim read out the indictment to the men, all of whom were present at the court except for the alleged escaped builder. The judge summoned prosecution witnesses on December 5 to record their testimony in the case.

According to the anti-corruption watchdog, in 1982 the Karachi Metropolitan Corporation created 198 stalls and shops on two amenity plots adjacent to the Kothari Parade for hawkers, while four commercial plots, each measuring 255.55 square yards, were also created. in the region. .

NAB claims that the real estate developer later purchased four commercial plots and 198 hawkers’ stalls. However, the two amenity plots were never transferred on behalf of the builder.

The regulatory agency also claims that builders in connection with the then mayor of Kamal and other officials illegally obtained 102 kiosks that were transferred to support the name of the real estate development company via a deed of carriage without obtaining permission from the Karachi Development Authority.

The NAB reference claims that the price of the stalls shown in the registration deed is only Rs260 million, but the market value is valued at Rs2,155 billion and the enforced sale value is adjudicated at Rs1,724 billion.

The supervisor claims that the builder who allegedly escaped was the next beneficiary of the joint plot illegally transferred on behalf of his company in relation to the then main recipient and sub-registrar II Clifton.

In September, a judge rejected a plea for the release of the allegedly fleeing builder, who has withdrawn the same and told the court he could choose to file a defense with NAB.

According to his lawyer, he wanted to withdraw his application for release, filed under Section 265-KUHAP, which was read as Section 4 (2) (b) of the 1999 National Accountability Law.

The lawyer has notified the court that his client has reached settlement in three other cases with the supervisor, who has accepted his plea. Furthermore, the lawyer added, the relevant accountability court in Rawalpindi has also approved the settlement of the defense with NAB on the matter.


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GCF Board Approves USD 1 Billion for Low Emission and Climate Resilient Development | News | SDG Knowledge Center | Instant News

The Green Climate Fund (GCF) Council approved USD 1.01 billion in climate finance for 16 projects seeking to promote low-emission and climate-resilient development. This brings the total value of the GCF portfolio to USD 7.2 billion.

The GCF Board approves the following projects and programs:

  • USD 23.1 million to Improve Adaptive Capacity and Risk Management of Rural Communities in Mongolia, with the United Nations Development Program (UNDP);
  • USD 82 million for Argentina’s REDD + Results-Based Payments for the 2014-2016 Results Period, with the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO);
  • USD 99.5 million for Planting Climate Resilience in Rural Communities in Northeast Brazil, with the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD);
  • USD 54.2 million for Costa Rica REDD + Results-Based Payments for 2014 and 2015, with UNDP;
  • USD 29.8 million for RELIVE – REILITENT LIVES OF Vulnerable Smallholders in the Maya Landscape and Dry Corridors of Guatemala, with FAO;
  • USD 64.1 million for Bio-CLIMA: Integrated Climate Action to Reduce Deforestation and Strengthen Resilience in BOSAWÁS and the Rio San Juan Biospheres in Nicaragua, with the Central American Bank for Economic Integration (CABEI);
  • USD 47.4 million to Improve Climate Information and Knowledge Services for Resilience in the Cook Islands, Niue, Palau, Marshall Islands and Tuvalu, with the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP);
  • USD 30 million for Participation in an Energy Access Assistance Facility in Sub-Saharan Africa, with Acumen;
  • USD 100 million for the Green Climate Funding Facility for Local Financial Institutions in Latin America, with the Development Bank of Latin America (CAF);
  • USD 256.5 million to Encourage Private Sector Investment through Adoption of Energy Saving Technologies and Equipment for the Bangladesh Textile and Ready-to-Wear Sector, with the Infrastructure Development Company Limited;
  • USD 18.5 million for the Technical Assistance Facility for the Global Subnational Climate Fund, with the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN);
  • USD 150 million for the Global Subnational Climate Fund (SnCF Global) – Equities, with Pegasus Capital Advisors; and
  • USD 26.7 million for Mongolian Green Finance Corporation, with XacBank.

The GCF Board also approved three projects under the Simplified Approval Process:

  • USD 9.9 million for Climate Resilient Food Production Investments in the Imbo and Moso Valleys in Burundi, with IFAD;
  • USD 10 million to Enhance a Climate Information System for Resilient Development in Liberia, with the African Development Bank (AfDB); and
  • USD 9.9 million for Gums for Adaptation and Mitigation in Sudan: Enhancing the Adaptation Capacity of Local Communities and Restoring Potential Carbon Absorbers from the Arabian Gum Belt, Expanding the Great Green Wall of Africa, with FAO.

GCF Council Co-Chair Nauman Bashir Bhatti (Pakistan) said one billion dollars in climate finance would provide “much needed support” for developing countries as the world responds to the climate crisis and the COVID-19 pandemic at the same time.

The Council also adopted an Updated Strategic Plan for the Green Climate Fund 2020-2023, to help channel increased climate flows to developing countries during the Fund’s first replenishment period.

The 27th GCF Council Meeting will be held virtually from 9-13 November 2020. [GCF Press Release on GCF Board Meeting Outcomes] [GCF Press Release on Opening of Meeting]


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United Nations Revised Guidelines for Voluntary National SDG Reviews | News | SDG Knowledge Center | Instant News

The United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA) publishes a handbook for countries preparing for voluntary national review (VNR) by 2021. This book provides practical information on steps countries might take when preparing a VNR, presenting the report. VNR to the UN High Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (HLPF), and the follow-up after HLPF.

The VNR is presented during the annual HLPF session held under the auspices of the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC). Conducted on a voluntary basis by national governments, the review is intended to track progress in implementing the 2030 Agenda and its SDGs at the country level, and is part of the Agenda’s follow-up and review. Since 2016, 205 VNRs have been presented by 168 countries. For the 2021 session, 43 countries expected to present VNR.

The VNR 2021 handbook was released in November 2019 as an updated version of 2020, 2019, and 2018 edition. The 2021 edition recommends that countries include a section on the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on SDG implementation, steps to be taken to ensure a sustainable green recovery, and the impact on VNR preparation.

The handbook notes that the ten countries conducting their first VNR will be allocated 30 minutes. These countries are: Angola, Antigua and Barbuda, Bolivia, Cuba, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Djibouti, the Marshall Islands, Myanmar, Nicaragua, and San Marino.

The 33 countries presenting the second and third VNRs will present them in panel format with 20 minutes each during the three-day service segment of the HLPF. Twenty-four countries conducted their second review: Bahamas, Bhutan, Cabo Verde, Chad, China, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Dominican Republic, Germany, Iraq, Japan, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Madagascar, Malaysia, Namibia, Norway, Pakistan , Paraguay, Spain, Sweden, Thailand, Tunisia and Zimbabwe. Nine countries conducted their third review: Azerbaijan, Colombia, Egypt, Guatemala, Indonesia, Mexico, Qatar, Sierra Leone, and Uruguay.

This handbook makes specific recommendations for countries preparing for a second or third VNR, including that countries should demonstrate progress made since their first VNR, and avoid repeating the information presented in the previous VNR. This handbook encourages countries to discuss how they are overcoming challenges in SDG implementation and to share lessons learned and good practices adopted.

Regarding UN support for state VNR preparation, the handbook notes that DESA organized three global workshops for working-level officials who are closely involved in the national preparatory process, as follows:

  • October-November 2020: Virtual workshop to facilitate learning and peer exchange between countries conducting VNR in 2021 and countries that have previously implemented VNR, as well as to cover the main components of the preparation process;
  • Spring 2021: In-depth exchange of the preparation and presentation process, the preparation of the VNR report section, and the presentation of the VNR report; and
  • On July 11, 2021 in New York, USA, a workshop covered the final preparatory matters and discussed the anticipated follow-up to the VNR.

In addition, five UN Regional Commissions are expected to host workshops on the sidelines of their respective regional sustainable development forums to discuss regional specificities and lessons learned by previous VNR countries.

By the deadline, the government must send a key message – the main findings of the review – by 2 May 2021. The final VNR report is due on 11 June 2021.

This handbook concludes with suggestions for concrete follow-up steps after HLPF. These included: presenting the results of the VNR presentation at HLPF at a press conference; questions and answers to the VNR project team regarding the results of the HLPF presentation; and share VNR at the regional level. The handbook further suggests that countries promote concrete action on the priorities contained in the VNR, such as through cabinet meetings to consider follow-up to the VNR, and develop action plans or roadmaps addressing the “who, what, where and when” From priority action.

The HLPF 2021 is scheduled to convene July 6-15. [Publication: Handbook for the Preparation of Voluntary National Reviews: the 2020 Edition] [SDG Knowledge Hub story on 2019 edition of handbook] [VNR database]


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The Bohra community will plant 1,000 trees at the YMCA Ground | Instant News

Sindh government spokesman Barrister Murtaza Wahab has expressed gratitude to the Dawoodi Bohra community for launching a campaign to plant 1,000 native trees at the YMCA Ground in South Karachi District.

Wahab thanked the Dawoodi Bohra community on Thursday during the launch of the tree planting activity at the YMCA Ground, where he was the main guest of the ceremony.

He said that the Bohra community has always provided support to the government for all these good causes, including activating plantations. He also said that all physical encroachment had been removed from the YMCA Ground by order of the Supreme Court.

Wahab, who is also Sindh’s Chief Minister of Law and Environment, said they want people to have the opportunity to use this land for recreational purposes. He said that the provincial government would spend Rs 50 million to turn the YMCA Ground into a recreation area for the Karachi community. He also said that the land was once full of dust and was used for wedding ceremonies.

He expressed his joy that school students had also taken part in the campaign to reforest the land. He said that such campaigns help children understand the importance of environmental issues and climate change.

The supervisor said artificial fertilizers made from household waste and rotten vegetables would be used to plant trees on the ground. He also said the Sindh government would plant trees from Karachi to Kashmore.


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WTO Negotiations Listening to Brazil’s Proposal on Fisheries Subsidies | News | SDG Knowledge Center | Instant News

World Trade Organization (WTO) members continued discussions on tackling hazardous fisheries subsidies throughout October. The Negotiating Group on Rules meeting on October 20 heard proposals from Brazil on cutting the percentage for subsidies, and discussed the issue of proportionality in illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing offenses.

Ambassador Santiago Wills (Colombia) introduced a draft consolidated text on June 25, with the aim of completing negotiations by the end of 2020, in line with SDG 14.6 targets. Throughout October, the Negotiating Group of Rules held several rounds of meetings to review text and propose amendments. During its 7-8 October meeting, the Group discussed whether and how to define what constitutes “fish”, whether to allow subsidies after a natural disaster or similar event, how to deal with maritime disputes, and territorial issues.

On October 9, the heads of delegation met and said that a revised version of the draft combined text would be of great help. Some members supported ongoing small group discussions to draft compromise language before presenting them to the wider group, while others expressed concern about being excluded from smaller meetings. Members expressed different perspectives on the pace of negotiations, with some calling for more frequent meetings to finalize negotiations by the end of 2020 and others emphasizing the challenge at the current pace and level of coordination required. One member said the current text placeholders that require members to be transparent about their subsidy program should now be expanded.

On October 20, Brazil introduced a revised proposal to reduce and limit WTO member fisheries subsidies, providing an adjustment to the percentage table of cuts that members must make based on the size of their fisheries subsidies. The proposal would increase the number of subsidy programs covered by cuts from USD 15 million to 25 million. Members in the smallest subsidy group, who can also demonstrate small catch volumes and short fishing distances, will have the possibility to add an additional USD 5 million, increasing their total limit to USD 30 million. Brazil said the proposal responded to suggestions and questions from members, and would provide a simple way for members to achieve ambitious results.

Brazil also proposed extending the negotiation period by three stages. The first phase will consist of an agreement on the modalities (percentage deductions and the implementation process), and the second stage will consist of members negotiating their basic subsidy rate to which the reduction will be applied. Brazil’s proposal states that large subsidies who delay notification will receive penalties in this second phase. In the third stage, members with the larger subsidy program are expected to respond and adjust their numbers when asked. Compliance and final review will follow this stage.

Regarding proportionality in violations of IUU fishing, the Group discusses what criteria for legal proceedings, if any, the determination of IUU fishing that must be met to trigger a subsidy ban and whether the subsidy ban should be lifted when the IUU fishing violation is minor.

The group plans to continue discussing this issue on October 21 and 23. Cluster meetings will be held from November 2-6 and from November 30 to December 4. [WTO Press Release] [WTO Press Releases on the Negotiations] [SDG Knowledge Hub Story on September Fisheries Subsidies Negotiations] [SDG Knowledge Hub Sources]


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