KUALA LUMPUR – There is an urgent need to increase investments in energy infrastructure to ensure access to adequate and affordable energy in response to growing demand for it, former prime minister Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi said.
He said ensuring such access represented the essential means in tackling poverty, improving human welfare and increased living standards.
“We need to pursue common, comprehensive, cooperative and sustainable energy security, as well as a regional vision with open, harmonious, and inclusive methods.
“This is to share expertise and promote renewable energy development,” he said in his speech at the Boao Forum for Asia Energy, Resources and Sustainable Development Conference in Kuala Lumpur today.
Abdullah said it would also strengthen bonds between countries and provide new economic development opportunities.
He said energy would also determine the quality of lives and be the driver of economic development.
Abdullah also underlined the necessity to promote inclusiveness, intelligence, integration, and liveability in response to rising urbanisation of Asian cities and the consequent increasing demand of resources.
He said based on the projection that there would be 2.7 billion urbanised people in Asian cities by 2030, there is a need to implement smart management strategies to effectively deal with challenges, such as housing and infrastructure, reducing vulnerabilities and improving economic growth.
“The type of infrastructure investment we make today will lock energy use and pollution levels tomorrow. The way we manage natural resources and the built environment today will also determine the options available.
“There is a huge opportunity for urbanising Asia to create sustainable cities by making smart choices to design cities and towns as vibrant places of opportunities, services and cultural heritage where people want to live and work,” he added. – Bernama