Adrian Cheng convenes innovative thinkers at inaugural sustainability forum in Hong Kong to drive collaborative actions to address climate change
Driven to bring actionable solutions to environmental and societal challenges locally and globally, Adrian Cheng – Executive vice-chairman and General Manager of the New World Development (NWD) and Founder of the K11 Group – launched his inaugural Sustainability Forum on 16 January at K11 ATELIER King’s Road Office Building, K11 Group’s latest project incorporating smart technologies, green design, art and craftsmanship, a triple platinum green and healthy building and the first in the world to be awarded WELL platinum pre-certification.
Under the “New World Sustainability Vision 2030 (SV2030), New World Development references the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals to standardize property development and management practices, establish targets such as energy and carbon intensity reduction by 50% based on 2015 levels and infuse its synergistic ecosystem businesses with the elements of Green, Wellness, Smart and Caring, to provide long-term benefits for everyone in the community. Its achievements are recognised by its listing on the Dow Jones Sustainability Asia Pacific Index and the number one ranking among diversified listed businesses in Eastern Asia on the Global Real Estate Sustainability Benchmark, among others.
The Forum, themed “Activating Change in a New World Order”, was organised through Adrian Cheng’s non-profit organisations Culture for Tomorrow and K11 Art Foundation. It brought together more than 200 social entrepreneurs, investors, start-ups and artists to encourage intergenerational dialogues, share ideas and explore partnerships that help tackle issues around climate change, sustainable cities, circular economy and impact investing.
During the Forum, Adrian Cheng launched partnership-led platforms that aim to deliver social impact:
• Adrian announced his support for Lance Lau, a young student climate activist, and demonstrated his support for aspirating leaders dedicated to tackling climate change and other sustainability issues.
• Impact Kommons, NWD’s impact-focused start-up accelerator: NWD announced Hong Kong’s first UN Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs)-focused accelerator program, Impact Kommons. The 8-week program will provide potential funding, coaching and support for the next generation of changemakers combating environmental and social challenges, with an aim to scale solutions for a better tomorrow.
• World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD): NWD announced that it is the first real estate company in Hong Kong to join the WBCSD, a CEO-led organisation of over 200 international companies, which focuses on helping companies to contribute solutions to societal and environmental challenges around the world. NWD will be working on public-private projects with WBCSD in the coming year under the themes of “Circular Economy” and “Cities & Mobility”.
• Sustainability themed Art Exhibitions: NWD unveiled two exhibitions that aim to raise awareness about the impact of climate change: “Carbon’s Casualties”, a photography exhibition presented by K11 Art Foundation in collaboration with The New York Times featuring climate change photography captured by Pulitzer Prize-winning New York Times’ staff photographer Josh Haner; and “Disruptive Matter” organised by K11 Art Foundation, which brings together current ground-breaking projects and ideas emerging globally in our shift towards a renewable, post-fossil world.
The Forum’s participants included Peter Bakker, President & CEO of WBCSD, who presented a keynote speech on how the Council is working with over 200 leading businesses to accelerate the transition to a sustainable world; Tony Armstrong, Senior Vice President of the International WELL Building Institute; and Lauren Sorkin, Acting Executive Director of the Global Resilient Cities Network. It featured sustainability advocates from companies ranging from Arup, BNP Paribas, CLP Group, the Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation (HSBC) and the Kering Group. The Forum also brought together impact-driven start-ups and social enterprises such as Grassroots Initiatives, Green Queen, Humansa, LightBe, post-consumer waste recycling company Miniwiz and Root Impact.
Mr. Adrian Cheng, Executive Vice-chairman and General Manager of NWD, said, “Our first Sustainability Forum brought together a number of key business leaders to inspire and build knowledge on sustainable living. We recognise that sustainability is, and must remain, a top business priority for the Group if we are to be in a position to create shared value and provide long-term benefits for our shareholders and other stakeholders in the community. We are building a collaborative culture that will convene like-minded changemakers to drive sustainability and social progress and create a win-win situation for corporations and society.”
Ms. Ellie Tang, Head of Sustainability of NWD, added: “This Forum is our way to jump start the new decade with action-oriented commitments and projects to continue placing sustainability at the core of our business and to empower our partners, tenants, consumers to make a positive impact in society. We will continue to drive UNSDGs through New World Sustainability Vision 2030 across all of our businesses, in order to reduce our environmental impact by half, improve the well-being of 20 million stakeholders and enhance the quality of life of 300 million people.”
Mr. Peter Bakker, President and CEO of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD), said, “It’s great to see more business here in Asia focused on sustainable development, equipped with targeted goals and concrete actions. Well-designed cities and mobility systems are a crucial element to achieve our vision of a world in which more than nine billion people can live well, within the limits of the planet. We are excited to work together with NWD to accelerate the transformation of our urban systems and achieve resilient, healthy and sustainable cities for all.”
For more information on the Group’s effort to promote sustainability, including “New World Sustainability Vision 2030”, please visit the Group’s official website (https://www.nwd.com.hk/sustainability/en/).