04 Oct 2019
STATEMENT BY THE PERMANENT MISSION OF SINGAPORE DURING AGENDA ITEM 2 OF THE 42ND SESSION OF THE HUMAN RIGHTS COUNCIL ON 10 SEPTEMBER 2019
Mr President, Madame High Commissioner,
We commend the High Commissioner for highlighting climate change.
Singapore agrees that climate change is one of the gravest challenges facing humankind today. We see it manifest around us as extreme weather events from the hottest European summer to Hurricane Dorian.
Climate change will inevitably impact the full enjoyment of human rights and the attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals.
As a low-lying island, Singapore is especially vulnerable.
Singapore contributes only 0.11% of global emissions and we cannot address climate change alone. But we want to contribute to solutions and we intend to do our fair share.
Singapore is part of the Paris Climate Agreement, and we have committed to slow down and cap our CO2 emissions by around 2030. We also launched the Climate Action Package in 2018 with capacity-building programmes to support our fellow developing countries’ efforts to be climate resilient.
We are also taking action at the national-level. Singapore is the first country in Southeast Asia to implement a carbon tax. Its revenue will be used to help industry reduce emissions intensity and improve energy efficiency.
We intend to set aside $100 billion over the next 50 to 100 years to address climate change. We have set up a Centre for Climate Research and we launched Singapore’s inaugural Zero Waste Masterplan in 2019.
Key elements of this Masterplan include shifting towards a circular economy, aiming to reduce the amount of waste sent to landfills by 30% by 2030 as well as a new landmark piece of legislation, the Resource Sustainability Bill, which will extend our regulatory framework upstream and send a signal to producers to take into account their impact on the environment.
We fully agree with the High Commissioner that more needs to be done. As Singapore’s Prime Minister Lee said recently, “We must make this effort. Otherwise one day, our children and grandchildren will be ashamed of what our generation did not do”.
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