Programme To Measure The Ecological (Carbon, Water and Food) Footprints Of Urban Malaysians And Raise Awareness On The Need To Reduce These Footprints.
Climate change is described as the greatest environmental catastrophe facing humanity in the 21st century. The carbon footprint is a measure of the impact human activities have on the environment in terms of how much greenhouse gases – which are directly responsible for climate change – we produce.

As a nation, Malaysia has a relatively high carbon footprint; the third highest in South East Asia on a per capita basis after Brunei and Singapore. And it continues to rise. Urban communities in particular have high carbon footprints due to their levels of energy consumption. Contributing factors include their dependence on private motor vehicles in the absence of an adequate public transport system and use of air-conditioning for cooling. Subsidies also shield the public from the real cost of fuel and electricity and result in wastefulness. In spite of this situation there does not appear to be a concerted effort to get the community to reduce its carbon footprint.
The first component of this project is to collect data on the carbon footprints of urban Malaysian households. As collecting data on households is challenging, an innovative approach has been devised by EPSM. With the support of the heads of a school and a pre-university college, data collection for households will be made a compulsory school assignment for Form 2 and pre-university students respectively. A survey of their equally critical water and food footprints will also be undertaken. Like carbon, Malaysia also has comparatively high water and food footprints compared to other countries in the region. While collectively, we will be able to have a household’s ecological footprint, the study will also be able to measure the carbon, water and food footprints as well.

The project aims to raise awareness among the Malaysian public, particularly with the urban communities on climate change and how interventions by local communities and public could help to address the issue.

1. To obtain data on the ecological footprints of urban households in Malaysia and their awareness of climate change
2. To create a model for urban households to reduce their ecological footprint.
3. To conduct a series of capacity-building seminars on Reducing Your Ecological Footprints across regional urban centres in Malaysia targeted at urban households

The activities will include: i) to obtain data on the carbon footprints of urban households; ii) to create a model for urban households to reduce their carbon footprints; and iii) to conduct a series of capacity building seminars targeted at urban households.

Urban communities contribute disproportionately to ecologicafootrint due to high energy consumption and the aim is to educate communities to live within ecological limits by measuring and creating a model for implementation through a 9-step approach.
1. Forming oversight committees
2. Conducting the survey and awareness-raising in schools and colleges
3. Compiling and analyzing the data
4. Developing a model
5. Developing an initial report and publishing brochures for the public
6. Organizing capacity building seminars and final roundtable discussion
7. Engaging with policymakers
8. Publishing manuscripts
9. Conclusion - wrap-up with roundtable forum on "Reducing Your Ecological Footprint".

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Project Snapshot

Persatuan Perlindungan Alam Sekitar (Environmental Protection Society, Malaysia)
Area Of Work:
Climate Change Mitigation
Grant Amount:
US$ 45,870.00
Co-Financing Cash:
Co-Financing in-Kind:
US$ 42,525.00
Project Number:
Satisfactorily Completed
Project Characteristics and Results
Notable Community Participation
The participants of this project will be: • Two Principals, and about 200 Form 2 and pre-university students (to collect data on their respective household’s ecological footprints) • Households of the more than 200 Form 2 and pre-university students who will be involved in the survey • About 100 representatives of local communities in KL/ Petaling Jaya, to participate in capacity-building seminars for urban households