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How Malaysia is Building a Resilient Society through Youth Engagement

Today’s blog is from a guest writer, Khairul Saleh in Malaysia, and shares how his part of the world is helping achieve the UN SDGs.

On the 3rd December 2016, WWF Malaysia has organized a conference aiming at gathering youth to embark on a discourse surrounding sustainable topic, especially on Sustainable Consumption & Production (SCP), part of initiatives under Sustainable Development Goals by the UN. WWF Malaysia as the main organizer of the event, was supported by other sustainable-supporting organization like EcoKnights and Malaysia Environmental NGOs (MENGO), to name a few.

The conference started with an open discussion with four (4) speakers on their general view on SCP, with Mr Brinckmann from Germany sharing his thought on Germany’s development surrounding sustainable energy generation, while Mr Loh and Mr Thiagarajan both shared their views on how Responsible Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) resolutions could become an active agent to support the SCP. Apart from that, Ms Chan Oga, being an activist in the field of community empowerment shared her ideas on how youth could play an active role to build a resilient society in facing current challenges like food security, global warming and economic instability.

It is vital for each and every one of us to do everything we could regardless of the scale of impact it has to drive the change.

Some important questions were raised by the audience, one of which highlighting ways young people could do to be an agent of change in driving this sustainable initiatives. As mentioned by Ms. Oga, it is vital for each and every one of us to do everything we could regardless of the scale of impact it has to drive the change. It may be as little as changing our own attitude and behavior towards sustainability, to as huge as engaging corporations to pitch ideas that will make their operations more responsible.

Another question raised was regarding remedial solutions regulators like the RSPO, UN etc could take to balance the interest of profit-making, sustainability-driving and consumer-benefit. While it’s a practical issue, but has not been widely discussed, the speaker explained that this is an important topic to be considered, to ensure sustainability remain voluntarily attractive, to both society and corporations.

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Finally, Robert Swan once said, “The greatest threat to our planet is the belief that someone else will save it.” So, let’s play our part no matter how small to save it, together.

Khairul is currently a Compliance Coordinator for a Malaysia’s conglomerate with an aspiration to play his part in community empowerment for full time. He is genuinely interested in working together with NGOs or initiatives which revolve around this topic. He can be contacted through s.khairulaizat@gmail.com or www.dudenotserious.wordpress.com

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