Schneider Electric’s second virtual Annual Innovation Day 2021 highlighted the urgent need to address the race to a net-zero carbon world through utilising Electricity 4.0 as the way to eliminate energy waste and shape a sustainable and resilient future.
Schneider Electric’s Secure Power Business Vice President for Singapore, Malaysia & Brunei Michael Kurniawan said, “Digitisation is essential for Malaysian businesses to grow their resiliency in the new normal. Companies are required to adapt to the constantly evolving landscapes and tech disruption, all while keeping sustainability at the core, for future generations.”
“This is in line with Malaysian government’s MyDigital initiatives as well the country’s commitment to environmental, social, and governance (ESG) principles and the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs),” he added.
Key speakers this year included Robert Swan, the first person to walk the South and North Poles; Rachel Botsman, Trust Expert, Lecturer, and Author; Aaron Binkley, Head of Sustainability at Digital Reality; and Brian Solis, Digital Analyst, Anthropologist, and Futurist; and Schneider Electric’s very own Pankaj Sharma, Executive Vice President for Secure Power.
Providing a banking perspective on sustainable finance, Eric Lim, Chief Sustainability Officer of United Overseas Bank (UOB) shared, “On the sustainability front, we tend to see two categories of customers. Number one, large companies who have embarked on their sustainability journeys, as well as number two, corporates who are starting out in this space.”
“The first category of customers wants to reap the benefits of their sustainability efforts and obtaining sustainability financing from a profitable bank like UOB. The second category of customers, they are looking into using us (UOB) to help them simplify the start to this process, and to reduce the time and cost of going on this journey. We do this by supporting them with our sustainable finance frameworks,” he said.
Adding to it, when it comes to the sustainable energy transition, Esther Finidori Vice President Environment, of Schneider Electric shared, “It’s fair to say that each sector has a specific focus on sustainability, depending on where major risks and opportunities lie. In the IT sector, we clearly see some very ambitious climate commitments. In the textile industry, there has been interesting work on traceability and ethics.”
“Meanwhile, in the consumer goods sector, a focus is on recycled materials and circular economy. In the agriculture business, the focus is mainly on regenerative agriculture. In our sector at Schneider Electric, our main focus is on green innovation and bringing to the market those technologies the world needs for the energy transition,” Esther said.
He also stressed that sustainability is crucial to enterprise viability in today’s age. “With a proper strategy in place, digitisation can deliver a clear path to business growth while minimizing impacts on the environment,” he concluded.