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SGBC Gala Dinner 2019-0177

 

The Singapore Green Building Council (SGBC) cemented its role as an integral enabler of a greener built environment tonight, demonstrating its impact through the Winners of the SGBC-BCA Sustainability Leadership Awards 2019.

 

Established in 2009 with the mandate to certify green building products and materials for Singapore’s growing green building and infrastructure portfolio, SGBC has grown into a national enabler of sustainability for the entire built environment over the past decade. This is exemplified by the Winners of the biennial SGBC-BCA Sustainability Leadership Awards 2019, who were honoured during the SGBC Gala Dinner 2019 graced by Dr Amy Khor, Senior Minister of State for the Environment and Water Resources & Health at the Orchard Hotel Singapore.

A Decade of Advancing Green Building
From a founding membership base of 129 building and construction sector organisations in 2009, SGBC now counts almost 500 organisations from the built environment as well as organisations not immediately involved in building and construction. One of these companies is DBS Bank Ltd, the Winner of the Business Leadership in Sustainability category. DBS is not only an asset owner, it is also a financier of sustainable buildings as well as a tenant, signalling an extension of green building awareness to the larger ecosystem. DBS has consistently demonstrated its emphasis on built environment sustainability in very significant and meaningful ways. From certifying all of their retail branches to BCA Green Mark standards, DBS was also the first Singaporean bank to issue its own green bond in 2017.

As one of SGBC’s primary programmes, the Singapore Green Building Product (SGBP) certification scheme is the only certification programme in the country dedicated to the assessment of green building products and materials. Since its establishment in 2010, the SGBP has since certified more than 3500 building products from more than 500 companies. More than 40 percent of companies with SGBC-certified products are market leaders in the industry, such as Pan-United Corporation and Uniseal Creative Solutions Pte Ltd, the Winners of the Leadership in Green Building Product award category. Pan-United has certified its entire green concrete product line (more than 150 models) with the SGBP while Uniseal was the first landscaping organisation to achieve the maximum SGBP Leader (4-Tick) rating for its product line.

As an expansion of SGBC’s scope in its 10th Anniversary, SGBC has taken over the administration and management of Singapore’s green building professionals under the SGBC Green Mark Professional Qualification Scheme. Refreshed from the BCA Green Mark Specialist Scheme previously maintained by the Building and Construction Authority (BCA), the new programme aims to upskill competencies and expand the knowledge of the green building professional community which counts more than 1,200 individuals.

The Winners of the green building individuals award category exemplify the men and women behind Singapore’s green built environment. In particular, almost half of the individual awardees this year fall under the Young grouping, a title accorded to Winners below the age of 40. The expertise and experience of the Young Winners belie their relatively youthful age, with all of them having notable green building achievements under their belts ranging from green building projects to developing technology that is able to help green the built environment.

“The built environment sector plays an important role in mitigating climate change through green building developments and sustainable construction practices. As we advance towards the national goal of greening 80 percent of our gross floor area by 2030, we are glad to see more young green professionals contributing in this area and the industry raising best-in-class practises with newer, better and greener ways to design, construct and maintain the buildings,” said Mr Hugh Lim, Chief Executive Officer of the Building and Construction Authority (BCA). “I hope that the winners this year will spur the industry to continue pushing the boundaries as we drive toward Super Low Energy buildings and change the way we build, sustainably, in the built environment sector.”

To better support industry transformation, SGBC has signed a Collaboration Agreement to start the co-assessment of Green Mark projects with BCA in April 2019. Coming full circle from its inception in 2009, SGBC can now address the entirety of the green building value chain: from the professionals to the organisations and certified green products and finally the green buildings themselves. By being directly involved with the nation’s green building rating tool, SGBC will be able to better refine its programmes and initiatives to cater to the growing emphasis on user-centricity and universal design. The two Winners of the Leadership in Sustainable Performance & Design (Institutional) award category - Kampung Admiralty and Wisma Geylang Serai – are clear examples of user-centric design, adding to the growing list of exemplary green buildings in Singapore. Both projects are iconic developments in their respective districts and are societal focal points for the community, providing a green and sustainable space for residents.

Towards the Future
For the next phase, SGBC will be focusing on two main areas: reducing carbon emissions and intensifying public outreach. The built environment is responsible for 40 percent of global carbon emissions, with embodied carbon emissions being especially critical. The carbon dioxide equivalent of emissions associated with the full supply chain of all materials and systems put into any built environment project, embodied carbon is different from operational carbon in that the latter can be improved over the lifetime of a building. If embodied carbon emissions are not addressed before the building project moves past the design stage, there is no way for building owners to reclaim lost carbon savings once the building is constructed.

SGBC is able to help the industry navigate through embodied carbon reductions through its certification programmes, primarily through the SGBP certification scheme, which necessitates a carbon footprint report for high-impact building products such as concrete, flooring and paints.

“As our built environment is designed and constructed to be more energy-efficient, embodied carbon emissions will become more significant and important,” said Dr. Ho Nyok Yong, President of the SGBC. “We plan to roll out a series of programmes designed to raise awareness of embodied emissions and also facilitate the industry’s own carbon reduction efforts by delivering implementation activities to help building owners reduce portfolio emissions.”

The other area that SGBC will be focusing on is educating the general community through intensified public outreach efforts. SGBC will step up efforts to share knowledge and expertise with the general public to help everyone understand what green buildings are about, and how to make more informed, sustainable decisions on the buildings that we spend our time in and how to also make our homes greener and healthier. The first wave of awareness is already underway in the form of green building messages in MRT trains on the North-South and East-West Lines, where commuters can read little nuggets of trivia on green building and stand to win prizes. Running through the month of September 2019, the campaign is held in support of the International Built Environment Week 2019 (4-6 Sept. 2019) and World Green Building Week 2019 (23-27 Sept. 2019).

“While almost everyone knows the basic elements of a green lifestyle, most are still very much unaware that material selection plays a very pivotal role in governing their family’s health and wellbeing. Together with our partners, SGBC will step up efforts to share knowledge and expertise with homeowners for them to make more informed, sustainable decisions with the objective to create greener, healthier homes,” added Dr. Ho.

The Singapore Green Building Council (SGBC) cemented its role as an integral enabler of a greener built environment tonight, demonstrating its impact through the Winners of the SGBC-BCA Sustainability Leadership Awards 2019.