More than 303,300 people and groups sign climate action pledge to reduce carbon footprint

Dr Amy Khor, Senior Minister of State for the Environment and Water Resources, urged those present to work towards strengthening the region's environmental resilience.
Dr Amy Khor, Senior Minister of State for the Environment and Water Resources, urged those present to work towards strengthening the region's environmental resilience.ST PHOTO: CHONG JUN LIANG

SINGAPORE - Over 300 individuals attending an environment-themed event made a pledge on Wednesday (Oct 24) to make a difference in the fight against climate change.

More than 303,300 individuals, schools and organisations so far have committed to the climate action pledge, which includes making a commitment to recycle, use energy efficient devices and conserve water, so as to reduce one's carbon footprint.

Among those who signed the pledge on Wednesday was Dr Amy Khor, Senior Minister of State for the Environment and Water Resources, who delivered the keynote address at the RHT Asean Summit 2018 at Suntec City Convention Centre.

Organised by law firm RHTLaw Taylor Wessing, the event was attended by more than 200 people, including business leaders, industry experts and professionals, and ambassadors from Asean nations.

South-east Asia is one of the most vulnerable regions to natural disasters and climate change, said Dr Khor, urging those present to work towards strengthening the region's environmental resilience.

She said: "The impact of these climate-related disasters is magnified in today's inter-connected world, and can affect economies and societies beyond national boundaries.

"We are working with fellow Asean countries to ensure that Asean remains resilient and united against increasing environmental risks, while transforming our economies to be more innovative and future-ready."


A participant scanning a QR code to sign a digital pledge in support of a sustainable Singapore. ST PHOTO: CHONG JUN LIANG

Additionally, Dr Khor said that there were several platforms to open up fresh opportunities for sustainable growth in the region.

These include the Asean Smart Cities Network, a new platform for South-east Asian countries to collaborate and tackle urban challenges with digital solutions.

Dr Khor also mentioned a new office, Infrastructure Asia, which will try to connect local and international stakeholders across the value chain, generating more opportunities for infrastructure projects in the region.


Participants signing a digital pledge in support of a sustainable Singapore. ST PHOTO: CHONG JUN LIANG

In her speech, she noted several trends, including the shift towards a low-carbon future, the growing call for sustainable production and consumption, as well as the increase in the traction of green finance both globally and regionally.

Green financing refers to the increasing of financial flows from the public, private and not-for-profit sectors to sustainable development priorities, according to the United Nations Environment Programme.

 
 

Dr Khor also cited the shift to the circular economy as a way of allowing finite resources to be used for as long as possible, combating the supply chain vulnerabilities of the current linear economy model of "make, use and dispose".

"This requires a fundamental change in perspective, where materials at a product's 'end of life' are not considered waste, but a valuable resource," she said.

As the chair of Asean and the coordinator for Asean-EU relations, Singapore will work with Asean countries and the group's dialogue partners to strengthen regional cooperation on the circular economy, she said.

To support the #CLIMATESG climate action pledge, go to http://mewr.gov.sg/individual-pledge, and make a commitment to a more sustainable future for Singapore.