Speech by Ms Grace Fu, Minister for Sustainability and the Environment, at the Opening Ceremony of Takeda’s First Positive Energy Building in Singapore on 30 March 2023
His Excellency, Mr. Hiroshi Ishikawa, Ambassador of Japan to Singapore,
Mr. Christophe Weber, President and Chief Executive Officer of Takeda,
Members of Takeda’s Board,
Thank you for inviting me to the opening of Takeda’s first positive energy building.
2 When Takeda broke ground on this building two years ago, this was known as the first “zero energy” building in the company. It has not only achieved this goal, but has gone further to become a certified Green Mark Platinum Positive Energy building, producing more electricity than required for its operations. This is a remarkable achievement. I congratulate Takeda for raising the bar on sustainability for the biopharmaceutical industry in Singapore.
Green Buildings and their role in Singapore’s net zero journey
3 Takeda’s Manufacturing Support Building is one out of seven buildings that has been awarded the Green Mark Platinum Positive Energy accolade in Singapore.
The building has:
• Over 660 solar photovoltaic panels covering an area of 1,600 sq m2;
• Façade design to reduce heat gain to the building; and
• A hybrid cooling system with air-conditioners, ceiling fans and thermal diffusers to optimise energy usage and improve air circulation and ventilation.
4 I congratulate Takeda for this achievement, and look forward to many more positive energy buildings!
5 The latest edition of the Singapore Green Building Masterplan, launched in 2021, sets out our sustainability ambitions for the Built Environment. It is an important part of our Singapore Green Plan 2030. It aims to deliver three key targets of “80-80-80 in 2030”.
• 80% of our buildings to be green by 2030.
• 80% of new developments to be Super Low Energy (SLE) buildings from 2030.
• 80% improvement in energy efficiency (over 2005 levels) for best-in-class green buildings by 2030.
Addressing the climate crisis together
6 Companies like Takeda play an important role in our ongoing fight against climate change. We are in a critical decade. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has recently set out the final part of its sixth assessment report. It boiled down to one simple message: act now, or it will be too late.
7 We are already feeling the effects of climate change here in Singapore. The Meteorological Service Singapore (MSS) recently published its annual Climate Assessment Report. This year’s report showed that temperatures in Singapore have been rising consistently since the 1980s, with an increase of 0.24°C per decade. We are also experiencing more intense and frequent rainfalls, with increasing incidences of flash floods.
8 Addressing climate change is a must. On our part, the Government is committed to leading the way in driving our national sustainability agenda. Last year, we raised our national climate target to achieve net zero emissions by 2050. Under the GreenGov.SG initiative, the public sector has committed to achieve net zero emissions around 2045, ahead of the national target. Starting this financial year, the Government will also publish an annual GreenGov.SG report to detail our progress, efforts and plans in environmental sustainability, while all statutory boards will publish annual environmental sustainability disclosures from FY2024.
9 Companies have much to gain by harnessing sustainability. Manufacturing with less resources and less waste will raise their competitiveness in the long run, particularly against the backdrop of higher carbon and energy prices. We will raise the carbon tax from the current $5 per tonne of emissions to $25 per tonne in 2024-2025, and $45 per tonne in 2026-2027, with a view to reaching $50-80 per tonne by 2030. The revised carbon tax levels will incentivise energy and carbon efficiency in all sectors, while allowing businesses to stay economically competitive as they embark on their low-carbon transition.
10 From 2024, PUB will be mandating water recycling on new projects in the water-intensive wafer fabrication, electronics and biomedical industries. I am heartened that there has been strong industry support for the more efficient use of water, and agreement among the companies that the recycling requirements are achievable. Indeed, adopting water conservation practices such as recycling is aligned with their goals to increase long-term competitiveness and resource resilience.
11 Takeda has underscored its commitment to the environment by setting up your Environment Protection Committee in the 1970s. In 2020, Takeda became one of the first companies in the world to achieve carbon neutrality , and has further accelerated your environmental goals, committing to reaching net-zero for your global value chain by 2040, including current scope 3 greenhouse gas emissions.
Partnering with industry to drive sustainability
12 The Government is committed to partnering with businesses like Takeda to achieve our shared sustainability goals. We will work with pharmaceutical companies to anchor R&D and manufacturing activities in Singapore. This year, the Agency of Science, Technology and Research re-organised the Institute of Sustainability for Chemicals, Energy and Environment to advance R&D in areas such as low-carbon technologies, sustainable materials and green manufacturing processes to help our industries transition to renewable carbon and green chemistry.
13 Singapore has also launched several grants to support companies in their environmental journey. Our EDB’s Resource Efficiency Grant for Energy provides enhanced support to manufacturing facilities and data centres to improve their energy efficiency and competitiveness. As part of the Research Innovation and Enterprise 2025 programme, a new $80 million Funding Initiative called “Closing the Resource Loop” was announced earlier this year. The fund supports both public and private sector players in R&D into sustainable resource recovery solutions for e-waste and plastics.
14 Let me conclude. The implementation of the Green Plan will require partnerships across all sectors. No one company has all the solutions. To accelerate our transition to a net zero future, we look forward to partner key industry leaders such as Takeda to grow the industry in a green and sustainable manner. I invite businesses to partner the Government in being catalytic agents to this transition.
15 One way you can do so is by taking the Green Nation Pledge. I invite all of you to scan the QR code on the screen to pledge – both as individuals and on behalf of your organisations. Together, we appreciate your joint commitment towards making Singapore a green, liveable and climate-resilient home!
16 Thank you and I wish everyone a great afternoon ahead.