For the last few days we have observed violent riots in France. Protestors across the country are on the streets. President Macron said, “when violence is unleashed, freedom stops”. The Prime Minister, hinted to withhold the increase in taxes on energy and later it was dropped. However, protestors are still continuing their rallies. Security agencies of France are unable to tackle and control the riots in an amicable way. President Macron is under pressure to solve it urgently and amicably, the Prime Minister had to lift the climate change negotiation in Poland and rush back to the country. These riots have a direct link with climate change in the context of France. France is on course to implement Paris Agreement and started to increase taxes on fossil fuels. It was agreed in the Paris Agreement that all countries will increase taxes on fossil fuel to discourage the use. It was also deemed important to promote clean energy resources and bringing tariff comparatively low. It is necessary to counter climate change by reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in the long run. It will help to keep the 2 degree goal intact. Riots in France give rise to fundamental questions, can countries afford it? Are people ready to accept it? Do economies of the world are willing to cooperate?Answers to these questions are not simple. All the possible answers are complicated, especially in the presence of weak economic indicators, high unemployment and inflation and weak social protection system. If a country like France, which spends about 750 billion Euros on social sector, could not absorb the shock, then how can developing and the least developed countries absorb it. It also compelled experts and governments to think innovatively to implement the commitments under Paris Agreement. However, the key message or lesson is that for any action, governments will have to take care of the basic requirements of people. Governments will have to devise instruments which can ensure that there is minimum effect on the common people.The key message or lesson is that for any action, governments will have to take care of the basic requirements of people. Governments will have to devise instruments which can ensure that there is minimum effect on the common peopleIn this context countries like Pakistan will have to be more cautious and prepared to implement Paris Agreement. Pakistan is going through the worst economic period due to multiple factors. Last two decades has brought all types of disasters, natural and manmade. From 1999-2003 Pakistan was victim of great drought which greatly impacted livelihoods of millions of people. In 2005, Pakistan was hit one of worst earthquake. Year of 2010 brought the biggest flood of human history. After that Pakistan faced a series of floods which inflicted huge social, environmental and economic cost on country. Climate change related disasters remained prominent ones in addition to others. Country, also suffered hugely by terrorism due to part of war of terror. These all disasters and problem created a mess for country and now country is suffering from vilest economic situation. Despite all these problems, Pakistan is a responsible state. It wants to contribute to tackle climate change but without compromising on its development needs. Pakistan has signed Paris Agreement and for last three years is busy to devise instruments and tools to implement it. Pakistan is also place of flagship project Belt & Route Initiative, the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). Situation puts Pakistan in a very interesting spot. Pakistan has to develop but with minimum footprint for climate and environment.CPEC is a necessary project for Pakistan. Through CPEC Pakistan is trying to overcome its economic and social problems. CPEC already contributed to tackle issue of energy crises. Before it, Pakistan was facing chronic problem of energy shortage and country was suffering from severe load shedding. Owning to load shedding industry started to move out of country and economic opportunities started to squeeze. Accumulatively, it contributed to deteriorate economic situation of country. Although energy sector development helped to solve some issue but still country is under tremendous pressure. Pakistan’s biggest problems on economic front are balance of payment, fiscal and current account deficits, high inflation and unemployment etc. PTI government had to struggled to find ways to save the country from default. Government applied multiple instruments to tackle it. It resulted in depreciation of Pak Rupee which contributed to inflation and affected life style of middle class and low strata. Now if Pakistan started to introduce climate change related taxes on energy sector it will further complicate the situation. Cost of energy will be increased that would lead to increase cost of production of industrial, agricultural and other sectors. Increase in cost of production will have direct implications on the inflation and people will suffer from it. Example of France can further explain the situation.Unfortunately, many experts in the country do not consider the example of France and keep on bashing the country. In recent times, CPEC has become a favorite to be abused for nothing. Story starts from the bashing of coal fired power plants and goes on. Time and again that government has clarified that the share of coal would be less than 10 percent of the total energy mix. Globally all major players are benefiting from coal energy irrespective of their state of development. South Africa gets 92 percent of electricity from coal, China, 75.3 percent, US 30 percent and India 75.9 percent. Despite this, Pakistan is also working on solar, wind and hydro energy but still opponents keep on beating the bush.Pakistan needs a stepwise transition not revolution overnight. Pakistan has to give space to national industry and businesses e. Arm twisting of industrial and business sectors will have a negative impact on national economy. Moreover, the government also has to devise instruments to protect the poor and the middle class of the country. There is a need for special economic programs for uplifting the living standards and to protect the people from sudden shocks and tax increases. CPEC has the potential to provide the required impetus to the economy. However, we have to bring it out of politics and treat it like a pure economic program. CPEC is already putting a lot of resources for renewable energy. Now China is also pursuing the dream of “Green Civilization” which will help to make CPEC greener and more climate friendly.The writer is Director Research Uptake and Business Development, Sustainable Development Policy InstitutePublished in Daily Times, December 26th 2018.