SINGAPORE: Singapore will designate 2018 as the Year of Climate Action, Environment and Water Resources Minister Masagos Zulkifli announced at the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP23) on Thursday (Nov 16).
Speaking at the conference in Bonn, Germany, Mr Masagos said the move will complement Singapore's current efforts to build resilience against climate change, including diversifying the water supply and enhancing food security.
"As a small island city-state vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, Singapore is committed to the effective implementation of the Paris Agreement," Mr Masagos said.
The minister noted that the rate of warming over Singapore from 1951 to 2012 was 0.26°C per decade, more than double the global average of 0.12°C over the same period.
The country's daily mean temperature is projected to rise by up to 4.6°C towards the end of the century and its mean sea level is estimated to rise by up to about 1m by 2100, according to him.
"Since our early years of nation building, Singapore has placed considerable emphasis on sustainable development ... Even so, we want to do more to instill awareness of climate change amongst our citizens and inspire and to support the Paris Agreement," he said.
In his speech on Thursday, Mr Masagos also announced that Singapore will join the Ministerial Declaration on Carbon Markets.
The declaration, endorsed by 19 countries led by New Zealand at the Paris climate change negotiations in 2015, states that interested countries will work together to develop standards and guidelines for using market mechanisms that ensure environmental integrity and avoid any double-counting or double-claiming of emissions reduction units.
As the incoming ASEAN chair for 2018, Singapore will also work with its fellow members and dialogue partners of the regional bloc to achieve climate objectives including reducing energy intensity in the ASEAN region by 20 per cent from 2005 levels by 2020 and increasing the component of renewable energy in the ASEAN energy mix to 23 per cent by 2025, the minister said.