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Malaysia Vouches for Sustainability
October 11, 2022 News


Written by: Khairul Haqeem, Journalist, AOPG.

The Paris Agreement of 2015 included Malaysia as a major player. Each country that has signed the Paris Agreement must report their Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) to the United Nations (UN). The ability of governments to meet these NDCs is a key factor in making these pledges. Malaysia has pledged to cut its emissions of greenhouse gases by 45 per cent by the target year of 2030, as part of the Paris Agreement. This includes 35% on an unconditional basis and 10% on a conditional one, pending receipt of climate funding, technology transfer, and capacity building from wealthy nations.

As part of Malaysia’s continuous commitment to the treaty, Schneider Electric hosted a panel discussion on sustainability via innovation, with Ir. Lee Cheng Pay, a member of Malaysia’s Institution of Engineers, serving as the event’s moderator. Panellists were, Eugene Quah, Schneider Electric’s Malaysia and Brunei Country General Manager, Ir. Kok Yen Kwan, TEEAM’s Vice President, and Ir. Dr Siow Chun Lim, Multimedia University’s Senior Lecturer (MMU).

The session is part of Schneider Electric’s larger industry event, Innovation Day 2022, which brought together industry experts to share ideas, concerns, and strategies for reaching the country’s digital and sustainability goals.

Moving Forward With Sustainability

Ir. Kok Yen Kwan of The Electrical and Electronics Association of Malaysia (TEEAM) kicked off the discussion with his take on the state of sustainability in Malaysia. “We are happy that Malaysia is one of the seventeen nations that has been classified as a megadiverse country by The World Conservation Monitoring Centre (WCMC) of the United Nations,” he said. We need to develop a game plan to utilise energy without jeopardising the future if we are to keep up the fight to preserve biodiversity. The good news is that Malaysia is already on the sustainability agenda, with authorities investigating and establishing legislation for green buildings, renewable energy, electric vehicles, and more. The moment has come for entrepreneurs and the government to collaborate on creating a sustainable and digital future for the country.

On the other side, Schneider Electric’s Eugene Quah delivers the company’s perspective from the business side, highlighting digital transformation in small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) as the primary component in achieving sustainability. In one of Eugene’s best lines, he says, “Companies must now investigate implementing sustainable methods, not just because of its benefits but simply because it is the right thing to do.” To this end, we may leverage the readily available technologies of today to make better, timelier, and more informed choices. Schneider Electric is able to assist organisations in fulfilling emerging sustainability requirements thanks to three primary enablers. Ensuring the openness of consumer data, integrating analytics and AI, and launching new partnerships within the digital ecosystem are all crucial accelerators. With these enabling factors in place, businesses will be able to effectively monitor and optimise their energy use, contributing significantly to a more sustainable future for Malaysia.

And for some perspective from the academic world, we had Ir. Dr. Siow Chun Lim of MMU. One of his main worries is that we don’t have enough market-ready professionals in our industry’s talent pool. His words: “Malaysia needs a robust talent pool to make our sustainability goal a reality.” Young people today are the business leaders of tomorrow, therefore it’s important that they have the skills necessary to succeed in the modern world. For this reason, it is essential that universities provide students with many opportunities to get practical experience through internships and other forms of industry-sponsored training. Therefore, enterprises should take the initiative to form partnerships with academic institutions so that incoming generations of employees are better prepared to embrace the green shift. Considering that a purely online learning session is only enough to educate the theory and not the practical abilities, it is imperative that the curriculum be reimagined and hybrid learning settings be extensively adopted.

We Are in This Together

The group reached a consensus on one point: In order for the sustainability journey to be successful, all parties involved—from large corporations to small businesses, from governments to individuals—must collaborate. As the discussion hosted by Schneider Electric showed, everyone is working toward Malaysia’s goal of being carbon neutral by 2050. And in my opinion, one of the primary takeaways from this gathering is that everyone has a part to play and that creating a sustainable future is not a one-man show.