About Low Carbon Society Blueprint for Iskandar Malaysia 2025
The Low Carbon Society Blueprint for Iskandar Malaysia 2025 is a written document that presents comprehensive climate change mitigation policies and detailed strategies to guide the development of Iskandar Malaysia towards becoming 'a strong and sustainable metropolis of international standing' in 2025, in line with the urban region's development vision. The LCSBP-IM2025 incorporates various related national policies, the Comprehensive Development Plan for South Johor Economic Region 2006–2025 (CDP) (Khazanah Nasional 2006) and 24 Iskandar Malaysia blueprints towards transforming IM into a sustainable, low carbon metropolis that is built on solid economic foundations (for more details on the policy context and framework of the Blueprint, see Sect. 7.2). The LCSBPIM2025 provides and explains technical details of carbon mitigation options (with specific measures and programmes) for implementation in IM. It is aimed at coordinating and guiding the implementation of a total of 281 programmes organised under 12 low carbon society (LCS) policy actions in IM in order to lead the urban region towards achieving a targeted 50 % reduction in GHG emission intensity of GDP by 2025 based on the 2005 level.
Low Carbon Society (LCS)
The concept of low carbon society (LCS) is the fundamental philosophy that underpins the formulation of the LCSBP-IM2025. LCS is an emerging theory and is defined as (Skea and Nishioka 2008, p. S6):
A society that takes actions that are compatible with the principles of sustainable development, ensuring that the development needs of all groups within the society are met.
A society that makes an equitable contribution towards the global effort to stabilise atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases (GHGs) at a level that will avoid dangerous climate change through deep cuts in global emissions.
A society that demonstrates high levels of energy efficiency and uses low carbon energy
resources and production technologies.
A society that adopts patterns of consumption and behaviour that are consistent with low levels of GHGs emission.
The ideology of LCS emphasises 'people' – the society – as the source of, and at the same time, solution to, climate change. It highlights existing human activities as the main contributors to global GHG emissions and therefore calls for efforts of the current society in all sectors to shift their mass consumption behaviour and lifestyle to a new consumption pattern that poses less harm to the environment. Low carbon society is a new society that consumes relatively low amounts of resources (raw materials, energy and water) in minimising GHG emissions to avoid adverse effects of climate change. Despite the fact that the concept stresses on social reform for better environmental system, it does not compromise the attainment of robust economic growth and maintenance of high quality of life. In this light, there are two fundamental aspects of LCS in leading societies towards reducing GHG emissions:
1. 'Decoupling' of economic activities, urban growth and urban transportation from intense resource and energy consumption and GHG emissions towards minimising the environmental impacts of increased economic activities and transportation (see Li 2011; UNEP 2011, 2014)
2. Exploration for attainment of potential social, environmental and economic 'cobenefits' arising out of climate change policies, which have been found to be highly pertinent to effective implementation at the local city level and to getting greater political acceptance of the policies (see de Oliveira et al. 2013; Seto et al. 2014)
In realising LCS, various 'soft' and 'hard' infrastructure developments/improvements are needed to encourage communities to change their preferences and behaviours to the practice of green lifestyles. 'Soft' infrastructure includes intangible elements that comprise of awareness, education, governance, institutions, legislation and finance. On the other hand, 'hard' infrastructure refers to physical elements that include the urban form, land use structure, transportation system, technology, building design and utilities (see Fig. 7.1). Specific strategies for low carbon society transformation for one city will be different from another city with respect to their geographic, economic, political and sociocultural contexts.