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Green buildings are the future


-New Straits Times-


KUALA LUMPUR: At least 57 per cent of greenhouse gas emissions from buildings could be reduced simply by integrating affordable designs to maximise energy efficiency and minimise waste, Public Works Department director-general Datuk Seri Judin Abdul Karim said.
He said it was a common misconception that green technology was costly as building owners and operators could actually save a lot of money in the long run.

He said several buildings in Malaysia had won Asean awards for their green design and initiatives.

They are the Energy, Green Technology and Water Ministry’s building, the Energy Commission Building in Putrajaya and the Securities Commission Building in Kuala Lumpur.

The new Public Works Department headquarters in Kuala Lumpur, which is due for completion in 2014, will also feature energy- saving designs.

Launching the Building Sector Energy Efficiency Project (BSEEP) here yesterday, Judin said the PWD would work with the United Nations Development Programme called the Global Environment Facility (UNDP-GEF).

The project is aimed at reducing the country’s greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 40 per cent by 2020.

Judin said the project was in line with the government’s efforts to promote green technology by utilising energy-conserving designs in new buildings and improving energy utilisation efficiency in existing ones..

“The project is also timely because it can be applied to new buildings. Energy-efficient buildings will require less operation expenses.

“The savings can be invested in other green technologies, such as solar panels, which is comparatively more expensive but effective,” Judin said.

Meanwhile, Dr Peter Dupont, the chief of party of the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) ECO-Asia Clean Development and Climate Program at International Resources Group, said energy efficiency must be the “first fuel” to be considered when consuming energy to spur a nation’s growth.

“The world can no longer depend on fossil and other conventional fuels in the future. By 2030, Southeast Asian nations will import 90 per cent of their oil if current trends continue.”

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