Businesses in Singapore continue to face significant challenges in their journey towards net-zero carbon, with 25% citing the complexity of the required transformation, 21% pointing to the lack of talent with expertise implementing net-zero initiatives, and 21% specifying limited resources to support net-zero initiatives. These findings are according to a new commissioned study conducted by Forrester Consulting on behalf of Amazon and The Climate Pledge[1], which unveils insights on the state of collaboration and climate action by organizations in the Asia-Pacific (APAC) region.

While over three in four (76%) businesses in Singapore (and 70% of firms across APAC) identify collaboration as critical to clearing these roadblocks and achieving their net-zero carbon goals, 61% say the lack of access to peer networks and cross-sector communities is a top challenge impeding climate collaboration. This is followed by the lack of awareness or knowledge of partner organizations or initiatives (29%), lack of a dedicated budget to support the development of decarbonizing technologies and services (29%), and lack of access to best practices and learning platforms (27%).

The study also found that businesses in Singapore seek to accelerate collaboration most in the areas of nature-based solutions (49%), renewable energy (47%), and decarbonizing transport and logistics emissions (38%) — sectors requiring significant innovation, investment and policy support to develop. Through deeper collaboration, businesses in Singapore aim to realize benefits including improving sustainability analyst ratings or investor ESG assessments (83%), influencing greener policy outcomes in key markets (80%), and increasing the company's presence among partner organizations and peers (79%).

“Climate change is one of the world’s greatest crises, and to address it, we all need to act together to achieve immediate and deep emissions reductions across all sectors. This new study reinforces the need for collaborative action and sheds light on the challenges that companies continue to face when it comes to climate action,” said Leo Laforgia, Country Manager, Amazon Singapore. “The challenges we collectively face on the path to net-zero carbon are considerable and we can’t do it alone. Through The Climate Pledge, we hope more organizations in Singapore will come forth and take joint action on projects that drive innovation, technology advancements and policy change to solve the challenges of decarbonization.”

Working together to solve the challenges of decarbonization

In 2019, Amazon and Global Optimism co-founded The Climate Pledge, a commitment to reach net-zero carbon by 2040 — 10 years ahead of the Paris Agreement. The Pledge now has more than 375 signatories worldwide, including Neuron Mobility, IBM, Microsoft, PepsiCo, Unilever, Visa and more. Signatories to The Climate Pledge agree to measure and report greenhouse gas emissions on a regular basis, implement decarbonization strategies in line with the Paris Agreement through real business changes and innovations, as well as neutralize any remaining emissions with additional, quantifiable, real, permanent, and socially beneficial offsets to achieve net-zero annual carbon emissions by 2040.

The Pledge continues to support climate collaboration through joint action projects with its signatories, focusing in the areas of the built environment, circular economy, renewable energy, Scope 3 emissions, and transportation. Among this is a new project within the logistics space to co-develop industry standards on the quantification of carbon emissions. The Pledge is also building Passport, an upcoming online space for its signatories to pool intelligence, share know-how, and provide access to new technologies and solutions that will help them achieve their decarbonization goals. Members of the community will also be able to learn about and register for Pledge events to continue collaboration in-person or virtually.

According to the study, close to a third of businesses in Singapore (29%) shared that engaging with ecosystem partners on a strategic level is part of their company’s approach to environmental sustainability going forward. Of these partnerships, businesses in Singapore prioritize collaborations with technological partners to engage more deeply in strategic transformation projects (74%), corporate alliances to participate in more industry-wide activities (67%), and external partnerships to advance specific sustainability-related initiatives (56%). Across APAC, early adopters of collaboration were more likely to already have reaped benefits around surpassing regulatory demands (41%), and are less predisposed to challenges tied to the lack of a shared resource pool (16%) as compared to laggards (30% and 26% respectively).

Learn more about The Climate Pledge and how its signatories are collaborating towards their net-zero goals here.

[1] Based on a survey of 750 C-level executives, directors, and senior managers with responsibility for environmental and societal sustainability at their company, evenly covering five APAC countries: Australia, China, Japan, India and Singapore.