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MANUFACTURING | Tony Chua, Singapore

SEC, SIMTech to develop Singapore carbon label

Joint effort aims making low-carbon Singapore a reality and boost Singapore exports competitiveness globally.

The Singapore Environment Council (SEC) and the Singapore Institute of Manufacturing Technology (SIMTech), a research institute of the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) on Wednesday inked an agreement to launch Singapore's and South East Asia's first carbon label, according to a Singapore Environment Council report.

This Carbon Label is a Singapore initiative to support the country's transition to a recognised low carbon economy by measuring and communicating the carbon content of the products and services we consume and produce, raising the carbon consciousness of governments, businesses and consumers. The carbon label in quantifying and declaring the carbon content is an advancement of the Singapore Green Label.

With a formal launch planned for the fourth quarter of 2010, the Singapore Carbon Label will provide a unique set of tools to evaluate, quantify and report for the first time on the carbon footprint of products and services based on rigorous lifecycle analysis, from raw materials to production, from distribution to use.

The principal aims of the Singapore Carbon Label are to differentiate Singapore products and services and provide a new, compelling source of competitive advantage to industry and the economy. A “Singapore solution”, the label builds on international standards and best practices, including the UK’s PAS 2050 and the draft standard ISO 14067. The scheme partners will make available a stringent methodology and standards alongside ready-made tools that will deliver both immediate impacts and longer term emissions reductions for businesses. This will help local enterprises to boost the competitiveness of Singapore's exports globally.

SEC's Executive Director, Mr Howard Shaw said: "We're delighted to be working with SIMTech to launch Singapore’s and South East Asia’s first carbon label. The SEC has a constant dialogue with government, businesses and the community, and it’s clear to us that the timing is now right to introduce a carbon label for Singapore and the region. The label will encourage businesses to take steps to reduce the carbon content of their products and services. It will create real opportunities for businesses to innovate, grow revenues and reduce costs, as well as to celebrate and market their achievements. Consumers, for the first time, will also have the information they need to make a positive difference through their choices of the products and services they buy."

Dr Lim Ser Yong, Executive Director of SIMTech, commented: "Since 2007, SIMTech has developed core competence and tools on the methodology, related standards, and techniques for carbon footprint quantification. We have quantified carbon footprint for an increasing number of manufacturers in different sectors, signalling an increasing demand for a carbon label. The Singapore Carbon Label will enable manufacturers and users to know for the first time how much and why the products and services we produce, contribute directly to climate change, and we are able to take action to reduce carbon emission and waste in meaningful ways. Above all, the initiative contributes directly to make Singapore a truly low carbon economy, putting Singapore-made products and services on the map globally."

In the collaboration, SEC and its advisors are responsible for project managing the Singapore Carbon Label through concept development, launch and ongoing operations. SIMTech is responsible for the technical development of the Singapore Carbon Label including the development of the data analysis, methodologies and tools required for quality footprint measurements and the provision of robust emissions reduction recommendations and guidelines to industry clients. Industry support comes from supporting organisations that include the International Enterprise (IE) Singapore, Singapore Business Federation (SBF), and Singapore Manufacturers’ Federation (SMa), with more organisations coming on board in the latter half of this year.

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