Communication for Sustainable Development

Singapore companies encouraged to explore sustainable construction

Companies in Singapore are strongly encouraged to explore sustainable construction in their building projects and to address resource efficiency issues.
Chief executive officer of the Building and Construction Authority Dr John Keong spoke about the government's commitment in providing funds for sustainable constructions at the 3rd International Holcim Awards for Asia Pacific.

During his speech, Dr Keong spoke about Singapore's plan on working towards zero landfill, reducing the needs of basic construction materials, and to build capabilities among local industry players.

"For this region, the question is no longer whether we should embrace sustainable construction and developments, but it is how fast we can move to achieve sustainability," said Dr Keong.

In April 2010, the government pledged $15 million to support the Sustainable Construction Capability Development Fund to develop capabilities, such as recycling waste and using recyclable material for building and construction.

BCA has received 60 proposals to date and $3 million have been committed so far.

Dr Keong strongly encouraged companies who have yet to make use of the fund to do so.

"I strongly encourage you to take this opportunity to explore technologies and methodologies applicable to sustainable construction," said Dr Keong.

During the awards ceremony, Dr Keong also applauded the 216 submissions from Asia Pacific for the Holcim Awards, which honours winning projects that demonstrate how sustainable approaches to infrastructure for communities and innovative architecture can improve the built environment and enhance quality of life.

He stated that the number of entries submitted from the region showed that Asia Pacific "is not far off from US and Europe in terms of technical contribution and technological know-how of sustainable construction".

A project that upgrades a traditional building method with effective low-tech measures in Lahore, Pakistan won the top prize of USD 100,000 (S$130,160).

The silver award was presented to a Thai team project for the conversion of a former textile factory into an urban agricultural zone, while the third prize was presented to an ecologically-designed retail and commercial building in Malaysia.

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