Promoting green practices to developers

Ahmad Asri (third from left) and Soam exchanging the signed document to formalise the partnership between CIDB and Rehda. The event was witnessed by Rosnah.

THE Construction Industry Development Board (CIDB) Malaysia and the Real Estate And Housing Developers’ Association (Rehda) Malaysia recently signed a memorandum of collaboration (MoC) to promote low-carbon and sustainable practices and to increase deployment of the Malaysian Carbon Reduction and Environmental Sustainability Tool (MyCREST) among developers and construction industry players in the country.

The signing ceremony was by CIDB chief executive Ahmad Asri Abdul Hamid and Rehda deputy president Datuk Soam Heng Choon.

“The Government is committed to growing the economy in a resilient, low-carbon, resource-efficient and socially-inclusive manner.

“This is in line with our sustainability goals under the 11th Malaysia Plan, and it is essential for us to engage the private sector as key influencers to ensure low-emission developments,” said Deputy Works Minister Datuk Rosnah Abdul Rashid Shirlin, who witnessed the signing.

“The collaboration between CIDB and Rehda is an example of how the private and public sector can work together to push the Government’s green growth agenda.

“By encouraging the adoption of MyCREST, developers will consider green practices at all stages of their developments and mandate sustainable practices from a top-down approach. Ultimately, this will help reduce carbon emissions generated by the construction industry.”

MyCREST is a sustainability rating tool introduced by the Works Ministry through the Public Works Department (JKR) and CIDB.

It aims to quantify and reduce carbon emissions in the construction sector. Through the adoption of MyCREST, industry players, including developers, will be guided to incorporate greater environmentally sustainable practices in their projects.

“As the leading representative for property developers in Malaysia, we are committed to partner CIDB and promote the greater adoption of sustainability rating tools such as MyCREST,” Soam said.

To mark the industry’s commitment to the partnership, Rehda members, including its Sabah and Sarawak associates, had pledged to use MyCREST to assess 20 projects as part of the pilot programme to promote sustainable development.

Some of the projects include SP Setia Berhad’s corporate headquarters in Setia Alam, IJM Land’s Waterside Residence in Penang as well as Damansara Uptown One’s Uptown 1 project in Petaling Jaya.

The Government has also ensured that MyCREST is adopted in all JKR public projects above the value of RM50mil.

Two key public projects – Kolej Kemahiran Tinggi Mara Selama in Perak and the Hulu Terengganu Polytechnic in Terengganu – will also be assessed with MyCREST as part of the pilot project.

Other publicly-owned buildings included in this strategic initiative are the Energy Commission’s Diamond Building in Putrajaya, Majlis Amanah Rakyat’s Kolej Kemahiran Tinggi Mara in Perak, the Malaysian Construction Academy in Sabah and CIDB’s newly constructed Complex in Johor and Sabah.

Rosnah said the collaboration would stimulate greater focus on sustainability and encourage the construction of more green developments in the country.

“One of the challenges that needs to be addressed is the lack of compliance to sustainability standards in Malaysia. Less than 2% of buildings and infrastructure in Malaysia are rated with a sustainability tool.

“We believe the level of carbon emissions from developments can be quantified and reduced if the take-up rate is higher,” she said.

“MyCREST adds a new dimension to the robust rating tool systems in Malaysia. With a comprehensive range of tools available, it will only further promote greater adoption of such systems as the industry will be offered more options to go green,” she added.

As part of the collaboration, CIDB and Rehda will be initiating regular awareness programmes to increase the understanding of the MyCREST green rating tools among developers and key industry players. GreenRE, a 100%-owned green initiative by Rehda, will also organise training sessions on a quarterly basis to provide accreditation to qualified green rating professionals.

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