Posted on September 07, 2019

An international figurehead in the battle against climate change will explain why there is no time to waste if the future of our planet is to be secured, as he becomes the latest global thought-leader to participate in Qatar Foundation’s (QF) Education City Speaker Series.

Ovais Sarmad, Deputy Executive Secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), will deliver a lecture entitled ‘Why Are We Waiting? The Urgency For Tackling The Climate Crisis’ at Qatar National Library, in Education City, on Wednesday, September 11.

In his talk – which takes place from 12.30-1.30pm, is open to the public, and will be followed by a question-and-answer session - Mr. Sarmad will discuss the compelling need for the world to take purposeful action to combat the climate crisis it faces. The UNFCCC, an international environmental treaty which came into force in 1994 and has been ratified by 197 countries, has the ultimate aim of “preventing ‘dangerous’ human interference with the climate system”.

Designed to provide Qatar’s community with opportunities to listen to, learn from, and interact with experts on a wide range of topics that shape lives and societies, the Education City Speaker Series reflects QF’s commitment to fostering dialogue and the exchange of knowledge. Previous speakers have included His Excellency António Guterres, Secretary-General of the United Nations; US Olympic fencer Ibtihaj Muhammad; Google’s former Chief Health Strategist, Roni Zeiger; and fashion entrepreneur Dame Natalie Massenet.

Mr. Sarmad’s lecture has been organized in collaboration with the Arab Youth Climate Movement Qatar – a platform which enables young people in Qatar to collaborate in taking action to protect the environment, raising awareness of climate change issues, and promoting sustainable lifestyle choices – as part of its Earth Talks series. Appointed to his current position in May 2017, Mr. Sarmad previously served as Chief of Staff to the Director General of the International Organization for Migration (IOM), playing an instrumental role in establishing its Ethics and Conduct Office and negotiating an agreement which brought the IOM into the United Nations system.

The UNFCCC puts the onus on developed countries to lead the way on cutting greenhouse gas emissions, while seeking to help developing countries limit their emissions without hindering vital economic progress, and directing additional financial support toward their climate change activities.