Singapore Environment Council – 2022 Reflections

30 DEC 2022 | by Isabella Loh
Singapore Environment Council – 2022 Reflections

2022 has been an eventful year, and we have seen an increasing number of organisations embrace impactful environmental sustainability initiatives, committing themselves to align with Singapore’s 2030 Green Plan and accelerated net zero aspirations. Together with an expanded network of valuable partners, we have made several strides forward over the course of 2022.

Celebrating Green Victories

We are delighted to observe that an increasing number of organisations are looking for green solutions. Many affirmed their commitment to being green through the Singapore Environmental Achievement Awards (SEAA), which recognises environmental excellence.

Singapore Environment Council – 2022 Reflections

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, 2022 was a challenging year for SEAA, as our regional partners were unable to join us in the awards ceremony. Despite this, nearly 200 people attended the SEAA prize giving ceremony, which was graced by the Minister for Sustainability and the Environment, Ms Grace Fu. The SEAA conference featured findings and insights from a joint study by SEC and KPMG entitled "Unlocking Sustainable Packaging Opportunities in Singapore". According to this research, the packaging market in Singapore was valued at $3.9 billion in 2021 and is predicted to increase in value by 8%. In Singapore, the recycling rates for paper and plastic garbage were only 6% and 39%, respectively, in 2021. Opportunities to transition into circularity are aplenty. The talks held at the SEAA conference aimed to serve as a catalyst for new debates, changes in daily consumption patterns, and fresh perspectives that will result in the growth of a more circular packaging economy.

Singapore Environment Council – 2022 Reflections

Not to be outdone, the School Green Awards (SGA), supported by the Keppel Care Foundation this year, received nearly 300 submissions. Over 200,000 teachers and students took up the challenge for a greener future, creating projects that engaged over 300,000 people in communities. Since its inception in 2001, the SGA has impacted over 1 million people, and this number continues to grow as our entire nation, including our youth, progress swiftly towards climate action. Close to 800 people attended the prize-giving ceremony at Republic Polytechnic. The innovative ideas showcased at the SGA exhibition clearly demonstrated the passion and enthusiasm with which schools tackled their projects, all centred around the SG Green Plan. Perhaps the most inspiring takeaway from this year’s SGA is that since 2018, participating schools have decreased their carbon emissions yearly by an average of 1,162 tonnes. This equates to around a 1.2 percent reduction year on year from 2018 to 2022. Plans are in place for a yearly reduction of 3% to 5% moving forward.

Leading the Way for Climate Action

Reducing your carbon footprint is an important first step for businesses on their green journey. SEC has helped partnering organisations to measure and reduce energy and water consumption, implement effective waste management strategies and reduce emissions through its Eco Certification, and the longer-term, more comprehensive GreenDNA programme. 2022 also saw the launch of the Eco Manufacturing certification, which guides manufacturing firms to establish carbon baseline and reduction targets. The certification helps evaluate the environmental performance of the whole manufacturing supply chain.

In a year marked with powerful transformations, we also worked with Formula 1 to certify the Singapore Grand Prix event under the Eco Events certification for the first time.

Additionally, we continue to champion green transitions. We aspire to initiate future studies like the packaging waste report, and creating thought leadership content from key opinion leaders on the blog page.

Inspiring Synergy

We have also started working with financial institutions such as HSBC and OCBC bank, to provide services and products to organisations looking to secure green loans in their efforts to become sustainable. These services include the Singapore Green Label Scheme (SGLS) and Eco Office certification to arm businesses with the tools required to be environmentally friendly. This furthers our commitment to be a trusted leader in environmental sustainability, as we continue to collaborate with people, industries and governments.

Singapore Environment Council – 2022 Reflections

2022 was also the year of landmark partnerships. At the turn of the year, we embarked on a collaboration with the Singapore Water Association (SWA), and will assist SWA with enhancing the capabilities and capacity of its members to jumpstart innovations and sustainable development. Singapore’s demand for water is set to reach 860 million gallons per day by 2060, and sustainable water management will be critical towards Singapore’s net zero aspirations. SWA were encouraged to secure Eco certifications, and we have started certifying industrial water equipment like high-pressure water jets and dish washers under the Singapore Green Label Scheme (SGLS).

Singapore Environment Council – 2022 Reflections

In October, we signed a Memorandum of Understanding with our Australian counterpart, Good Environmental Choice Australia, to promote the adoption of ecolabels. By mutually recognising each country’s ecolabelling schemes, the agreement will contribute to the expansion of the market for greener products and services.

Singapore Environment Council – 2022 Reflections

We also partnered with Strides-DST to pilot its Carbon Management Programme. Initial carbon calculations for the replacement of transport fleets from internal combustion engines to electric vehicles showed that electrifying a mobile fleet could potentially reduce carbon emissions by up to 45%! This Carbon Management Programme, which allows us to work with companies to develop sustainable strategies and reports based on the internationally recognised Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Protocol, has also been implemented at several organisations, alongside other programmes like the Mandatory Packaging Report. On top of these, we were recognised as one of Enterprise Singapore’s training partners under its Enterprise Sustainability Programme (ESP). In March 2022, we launched “Putting Sustainability into Practice for Business”, a course that helps support businesses on sustainability initiatives and to capture new opportunities in the green economy, by educating their staff on sustainability-related risks, impacts and the importance of integrating sustainability into their organisations. The ESP is expected to benefit more than 6,000 enterprises, and we are proud to be a leader in this space, helping businesses on their sustainability journey, regardless whether they are well on their way to being green, or just starting out.

Singapore Environment Council – 2022 Reflections

The year ended on a high note for partnerships, as we announced a joint project with Sembwaste to determine the most cost effective and lowest carbon-footprint methods to harvest clean stream recyclables.

2023 is set to be another forward-looking year, so keep an eye out for our events, announcements and partnerships!

To know more about how we can help you in your sustainability journey, contact us at

By Isabella Loh, Chairman, SEC Board of Directors

On behalf of SEC, I would like to thank all our partners, well-wishers, friends, Board Directors, management, and staff of SEC for their amazing contributions in this challenging year. We look forward to your continued support and to working together in the coming years. Happy New Year, may it be full of blessings, good health and prosperity!