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South Asian Youth Speak Up: Combating Air Pollution

June 5, 2023

Join us for a virtual discussion on World Environment Day, Monday, June 5, 2023, from 8:00-9:00 AM ET. Air pollution is a major issue in South Asia, affecting the health and well-being of millions of people. Hear from young people across South Asia who will share their experiences, ideas, and solutions to counter and cope with air pollution and inspire all of us to take action for cleaner air in South Asia. 

  • Photo of Afsara
    Afsara Mirza
    Lead of the Environment and Climate Change Network, Youth Policy Forum, Bangladesh

    Afsara leads Youth Policy Forum's Environment and Climate Change Network. She is also a Research Officer at the International Centre for Climate Change and Development. Her research interest lies in just transition; locally-led adaptation and non-economic loss and damage

  • Photo of Abhiir
    Abhiir Bhalla
    Youth Environmentalist and Advisor, India

    As an active youth environmentalist at a global level, Abhiir has been working in the field of environmental conservation for over 8 years. Identified by the BBC World News as amongst the foremost youth environmentalists in 2020, Abhiir's work has been featured in the national and international media. He's the producer of a popular climate change podcast, 'Candid Climate Conversations' for a UK-based think tank, and has been a three-time TEDx Speaker. Abhiir is the Youth Ambassador for Earth Day International and is an advisor to the Board of the Commonwealth Human Ecology Council (CHEC). Following the COP26 Summit, he appeared on BBC World News to represent the Indian perspective with regard to India's 11th hour change in its decision to phase out the usage of coal. In June 2022, Abhiir represented India and CHEC at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Conference (CHOGM) in Kigali, Rwanda. Most recently, Abhiir represented India at the Youth Conference of COP-27 at Sharm El-Sheikh, and was also a panellist on several key panels in the Blue Zone at COP. He continues to do all of this while pursuing his education at Ashoka University, and hopes to be working full-time in the fields of ESG, Sustainability and Diplomacy in the near future.

  • Photo of Ameera
    Ameera Adil
    Head of Sustainability, National University of Sciences and Technology, Pakistan

    Ameera Adil is a climate change advocate and communicator. She is currently the Head of Sustainability at National University of Sciences and Technology. She is also working with Youth Affairs Office of Pakistan to develop capacity for the Climate Change Wing of the National Youth Council of Pakistan. She did her master's dissertation in the nexus between air pollution and mental health and has a bachelor's degree in environmental engineering. She is part of several youth climate activist groups and is focused on creating space for young people in taking action on environmental and climate issues. 

  • Photo of Parth
    Parth Sarthi
    Lead Product Management, Chakr Innovation Private Limited, India

    Parth Sarthi is an esteemed member of Chakr Innovation, boasting an illustrious tenure with the organization since its inception. With a background in Mechanical and Automation Engineering from Indraprastha University, Parth brings forth a wealth of experience exceeding seven years, primarily focused on engineering prowess, encompassing product development and enhancement at its core. His distinguished contributions encompass spearheading pivotal initiatives in departmental and team building, coupled with spearheading the ground-breaking development of Chakr Shield. As the head of Product Management, Parth's unparalleled leadership acumen and profound domain expertise position him as an invaluable asset, cementing his indispensable role within Chakr Innovation. 

  • Photo of Anjali Sai
    Anjali Sai Chalise
    School and College Coordinator at Nepalese Youth for Climate Action (NYCA), Nepal

    Anjali is currently pursuing her bachelor’s degree in Environmental Science in Nepal. She strongly believe that individual actions can make a big difference in protecting the environment, and that collective efforts from communities are equally important. As a School and College Coordinator at Nepalese Youth for Climate Action (NYCA), Anjali is dedicated to raising awareness about the urgent need for climate action and encouraging young people to adopt eco-friendly behaviors.

  • John Roome
    John Roome (Opening Remarks)
    Regional Director, South Asia Sustainable Development

    John Roome is Regional Director, South Asia Sustainable Development at the World Bank. Before that he was the Senior Director leading the World Bank’s work on Climate Change from 2015 to 2019. John joined the World Bank in 1989, working initially in Africa. He has since held various leadership positions including Director for Sustainable Development in the Bank’s East Asia and the Pacific Region, Operations and Strategy Director in the Bank’s South Asia region and as Operational Quality Director in the Bank’s Africa region. His Bank experience spans water, urban, transport, energy, rural, agriculture, environment, and social sectors, as well as disaster risk management and climate change. Before joining the World Bank, John worked in Europe for Monitor Company, a leading corporate strategy consulting firm, and at Old Mutual, a South African Life Assurance Company. He was educated at Oxford University, as a Rhodes Scholar, where he obtained Masters Degrees in Econometrics and in Management Studies, and at the University of Cape Town where he obtained a Bachelor’s degree in Economics, Statistics and Actuarial Science. He is married with three children and enjoys running, biking, hiking and kayaking.

  • OneSouthAsia
    Cecile Fruman (Moderator)
    Director, Regional Integration and Engagement, South Asia

    Cecile Fruman is Director, Regional Integration and Engagement in the South Asia Region (SAR). She is responsible for fostering collaborative activities amongst SAR countries and managing partnerships and engagements with SAR and global development partners. She supports a variety of activities to advance regional cooperation in South Asia, the least-integrated of the world’s regions. Cecile moderates #OneSouthAsia Conversations, a bimonthly online series that explores ideas for regional cooperation in economic connectivity, climate resilience, and human capital. The World Bank’s work on regional integration is highlighted on the website, #OneSouthAsia

Event Details

  • When: Monday, June 5, 2023, 8:00 AM - 9:00 AM ET
  • Where: Livestreamed on this page and World Bank South Asia Facebook and Twitter