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Three Malaysian Cities Paving Ways to Become Smart and Sustainable Cities

Petaling Jaya, 04 May: Petaling Jaya, Melaka and Seberang Perai have been selected as global finalists in the One Planet City Challenge (OPCC) competition. 250 cities from 53 countries representing 66% of the global population participated in the 2019/2020 cycle. The biennial OPCC competition is organised by World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) to mobilise global and local action among cities in the global transition toward a climate-resilient, one-planet future.

“WWF-Malaysia is very proud that more cities are stepping up to the sustainability challenge by implementing various environmental initiatives. Apart from these three finalists, Shah Alam, Penang, Sepang and Jasin also signed up for the competition. We are very excited to see cities in Malaysia undertaking innovative climate actions on delivering the 2015 Paris Agreement on climate change,” as stated by Sophia Lim, Executive Director/CEO of WWF-Malaysia.

Each of the three cities has its own compelling narrative that propels them into the final round of the global competition. Petaling Jaya is recognised for sustainability grants and incentives provided to its residents. Melaka has made serious efforts to revive Sungai Melaka through their multi-million-ringgit river rehabilitation project. Seberang Perai has expanded its recycling facilities and waste management programmes to maximize recycling rates.

“As the world continues to contain the spread of coronavirus thus confining us to our homes, the way we move and live our lives has radically changed. We can see the impact of the Movement Control Order on our rivers, such as Sungai Melaka and Sungai Pinang. Beyond the pandemic, it is important that cities around the world follow a development path that focuses on health and sustainability in their planning. Urban plans should incorporate green spaces, building access to water, health, and sanitation infrastructures. These elements are important for the mental and physical health of city residents during a pandemic,” added Sophia Lim.

As of now, more than half of Malaysia’s accredited cities have taken part in OPCC or WWF’s sustainable cities programme spanning 2014 to 2020. WWF-Malaysia hopes to see more Malaysian cities join the challenge in the coming years.

The three Malaysian national finalists will also now take part in the OPCC’s ‘We Love Cities’ campaign, which will be held later in the year. The campaign aims to inspire and engage their respective citizens for support as well as sharing ideas for improvement. Similarly, the national and global winner will be announced in the second half of the year. For those who would like to understand more about WWF’s goals of cultivating sustainable cities, click at this link for more information.

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