Kuala Lumpur, 13 February 2007
Text of Speech by Ms. Ruth Yeoh:
Good afternoon everyone. Thank you for joining us here today for our announcement of Climate Change Week, an initiative aimed at raising awareness for the critical issue of global warming.
From March 6th - 9th, there will be a range of activities sponsored by YTL, focusing on the key issue of climate change. Given the dire situation of the environment, we strongly believe that everyone in the world, including Malaysians, have a vested interest in getting the facts right and finding out how they can contribute to the solution.
Long before global warming became a hot topic, many companies such as GE, Siemens, Toyota, and YTL, started to rethink the way they operate because they understood the importance of sustainability and environmental protection in the course of doing business.
However, for the most, companies the world over have not seen the need to use energy efficiently, nor to limit their use of fossil fuels, nor to be responsible for their carbon emissions into the atmosphere. This has largely contributed to the dire ecological situation we’re currently in, as mentioned by my father.
On March 6th, the official launch of Climate Change Week, we will be launching a book called "Cut Carbon, Grow Profits", which is co-edited by myself and Dr. Kenny Tang and contains forewords from the Malaysian Prime Minister Dato Seri Abdullah Badawi, UK Foreign Secretary Margaret Beckett and UK Conservative Leader, David Cameron, among others.
Dr. Tang, who unfortunately couldn’t be with us today, is CEO and founder of Oxbridge Climate Capital, a leading UK expert in the fields of carbon reduction and clean technology. He is the lead author of “The Finance of Climate Change – A Guide for Governments, Corporations and Investors” which was published to coincide with the Gleneagles G8 Summit of the Top 8 Global Countries in July 2005 and included a special message from UK Prime Minister, Tony Blair.
He is also the author of “Taking Research to Market: How to Build and Invest in Successful University Spinouts” – a major handbook in the field of financing university spinouts in the environmental and clean energy space.
With contributions from international experts, Cut Carbon, Grow Profits shows the benefits of incorporating strategic aspects of carbon thinking into the business strategies of companies, their customers and suppliers, in order to create sustainable shareholder value, cut costs, increase revenues, build powerful corporate reputations, develop new low-carbon products and services, engage employees, and create powerful brands in the process.
Cut Carbon, Grow Profits brings together 20 case studies taken from cutting-edge international companies in a variety of sectors, such as Siemens, BT, Ford and Ernst & Young. Essential reading for business executives at every level, we are confident this book will guide and inspire leaders in all functions.
I also contributed a chapter in the book that looks at the growing risk of climate change and its implications and recommended strategies for Asian companies and economies, highlighting YTL Corporation as a leader in the field of climate change mitigation and sustainable business practices.
On March 6th, we will also be premiering the Oscar-nominated documentary, "An Inconvenient Truth" , starring former US Vice-President Al Gore, who exposes the myths, misconceptions and reality surrounding global warming.
This movie began as a powerpoint presentation that the former Vice President has given over a thousand times in cities all over the US, in the hopes of raising awareness and mobilising the audience to act on global warming before it is too late.
We’re grateful that it has been made into a movie because we honestly feel it is one of the most important movies you will ever watch in your life. Not only will it inform and educate, but it will help you understand how each of us on the planet has a role to play in conserving the environment.
That is why YTL is sponsoring free public screenings on March 8th and 9th. We will also be hosting a free matinee screening for college students on March 9th because we understand the importance of educating the next generation of leaders in this country who can make a difference on this issue.
Finally, as my father rightly stated, it is crucial for businesses in Malaysia to start the move towards clean technology. In line with that, we are sponsoring the "Cut Carbon, Grow Profits" Conference that will take place on March 8th at the Ritz-Carlton Conference Centre.
Open to members of the public, the conference aims to bring this subject alive through its presenters, comprising selected global experts who contributed to the book, including Dr. Kenny Tang himself. Corporate speakers will include CLSA, HBSC, Standard Chartered and Siemens among others, with support from leading conservation organisations including the Nature Conservancy, the World Wide Fund for Nature (Malaysia), The British Antarctic Survey and RARE, to name a few.
We’re confident this conference will provide not only an in-depth look into the issues covered in the book, but also encourage debate, discussion and knowledge around it.
We encourage CEOs, managers, academics, NGOs and any other interested parties to be part of this important conference, so that they can impact change in their own capacities.
As you can see, Climate Change Week is going to be a very eventful, exciting and important time, not only for us, but for all Malaysians and ultimately, our nation.
On the 28th February, we will be hosting a media preview that will delve into the "Cut Carbon, Grow Profits" book in more detail, with the focus on contents, contributors, chapters and messages within the book. It will also be an opportunity to meet with Dr. Kenny Tang, the co-editor, and one of UK’s leading experts on this topic.
We hope that the media will help us spread the word about these events, especially the free public screenings of "An Inconvenient Truth", as well as the Conference. The faster we spread awareness on global warming, the sooner we can start affecting change in our own communities. Thank you once again for your support by being here today and God bless you all.
Speech by Ruth Yeoh
Finance Director, YTL Corporation Berhad
Climate Change Week Press Conference
13 February 2007
Carlton Conference Centre, Kuala Lumpur
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