Singapore's public sector outlines plans to go green

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SINGAPORE: Singapore’s public sector is taking the lead in going green when it unveiled its first action plan on Monday (Jun 5), outlining its collective efforts in environmental sustainability.

Specifically, it aims to reduce electricity and water consumption by 15 per cent and 5 per cent, respectively, by 2020. From 2013 to 2015, the sector accounted for about 4 per cent of the country’s total electricity consumption and 3 per cent of total water consumption. 

The public sector comprises of 16 institutions and 64 statutory boards, with more than 145,000 workers and operates about 1,000 facilities across the island.

The plans also include embarking on innovative initiatives and projects, such as food waste recycling in public sector premises and a floating solar testbed in Tengeh Reservoir.

Speaking at the opening of the Singapore Sustainability Academy on Monday, Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean said: “We will expand our green procurement policy to cover more products and adopt green practices for public sector events. Such efforts will help the Government reap cost savings, and build up capabilities in urban sustainability.”

The Singapore Sustainability Academy is a joint collaboration led by property group City Developments Limited (CDL) and the Sustainable Energy Association of Singapore. It is the first major “people, public and private” initiative in support of Singapore’s environmental and climate change goals.

The logo of Singapore Sustainability Academy. (Photo: Afifah Ariffin)

As a nod to its green credentials, the Singapore Sustainability Academy’s new building is self sustainable for its energy needs. For instance, solar panels installed on the building’s roof are able to generate enough energy. It is also made of wood from responsible sources and uses smart technology to control lighting and air conditioning. 

“It will be a hub for thought leadership, sharing of best practices and we want – whether it is public sector, private sector or people sector – everybody to come and contribute to conserve the environment,” said Ms Esther An, CDL’s chief sustainability officer.

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