Businesses, Communities, And Individuals Helping To Shape Singapore’s Long-Term Low Emissions Development Strategy
The National Climate Change Secretariat (NCCS), under the Strategy Group, Prime Minister’s Office, conducted a public consultation exercise from 16 July to 30 September 2019 on the Long-Term Low Emissions Development Strategy (LEDS) to create a sustainable environment. About 2,000 submissions were received from businesses, community groups, and individuals. Several stakeholder engagement sessions were also organised between August 2019 and January 2020 to facilitate in-depth discussions with youths, green groups, green councils, academics and businesses from a variety of sectors.
Views on measures and actions that could be taken by the Government, businesses, households, and individuals were sought on the following key areas:
a. Improving energy efficiency across all sectors;
b. Encouraging responsible climate action through carbon pricing;
c. Reducing emissions from power generation, and increasing alternative energy sources;
d. Deploying emerging low carbon technologies;
e. Encouraging collective climate action; and
f. Tapping on green growth opportunities.
The feedback received echoed the results from the Climate Change Public Perception Survey 2019 - more Singaporeans are aware of climate change and are prepared to do more. The key points arising from the feedback are:
a. Desire for greater ambition, but also concerns regarding the challenges involved to realise ambition.
Some called for emissions to peak well before 2030, reach net-zero by 2050, and to be in line with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC) Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5°C. Others raised concerns about economic competitiveness and the challenges of reducing emissions by a significant margin. These challenges include our lack of access to renewable energy at scale, and the high costs and nascency of key technologies.
b. Need for deep transformation of Singapore’s economy and for Singapore to seize green growth opportunities to be competitive in a carbon-constrained world.
Many emphasised the need to future-proof existing businesses to ensure they remain relevant and internationally competitive for the long term. Green opportunities were highlighted in a wide variety of sectors – waste management, water, energy, sustainable finance, carbon trading and more.
c. Emphasis on research and development (R&D) and technological progress to develop innovative solutions to aid the transition to a low carbon future.
A wide variety of technological options and R&D opportunities across transport, power, buildings, and waste sectors were identified. Carbon Capture, Utilisation and Storage, and hydrogen (as alternative fuel and industrial feedstock) were identified as key technologies. Nevertheless, respondents noted the presence of significant challenges, such as high costs and the lack of infrastructure, to deploy such technologies for Singapore.
d. Strong support for the use of clean energy to power our industries, vehicles and homes, but mindful of the constraints to overcome.
Solar energy was identified as the most viable clean energy source for deployment, although several respondents noted that issues like intermittency and our limited land area were key limiting factors in scaling up deployment. Other solutions like regional power grids would accelerate regional take-up of clean energy, but various challenges such as infrastructure development needed to be addressed.
e. Calls for collective action to engender widespread sustainable practices and low carbon lifestyles.
Respondents highlighted reducing waste and plastic use, improving recycling, and adopting plant-based diets, as concrete ways to reduce individuals’ emissions. Many called for greater dialogue and engagement between the Government and the public to facilitate more effective collective climate action.
An executive summary and detailed document of the feedback and the Government’s responses can be found in the Annex which will be released on the REACH (www.reach.gov.sg) and NCCS (www.nccs.gov.sg) websites. Members of the public who would like to make their submissions publicly available can do so using the following web link: http://bit.ly/ledsform.
Continued Partnerships with Stakeholders
Addressing climate change requires a whole-of-society effort. The Government recognises the concerns from different stakeholders, and the significant effort necessary to transit to a low carbon future. The Government will continue to study the suggestions, convene platforms for engagement, and explore partnerships with businesses, the community and individuals to develop solutions to build a resilient and sustainable Singapore.
The Government is concurrently reviewing Singapore’s Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) under the Paris Agreement and intends to update it by 2020. We will update our NDC and communicate our LEDS soon.
 About 1,600 of the feedback were received through the outreach efforts of the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) and Speak For Climate.