SINGAPORE - Media OutReach - 7 October 2020 - A total of 81 projects and business leaders across Asia were selected asrecipients of the Asia Responsible Enterprise Awards 2020 (AREA),which was an increase of 27% from last year. Widely regarded as the goldstandard for CSR and sustainability practice, this year's award ceremony wasorganized virtually due to the unprecedented global healthcare crisis. Adiversity of industries and leading organizations from all over the regionreceived the AREA, demonstrating a continued dedication to responsible businesspractices despite the pandemic.
Organized byEnterprise Asia, the leading non-governmental organization for responsibleentrepreneurship in Asia, the AREA aims to recognize and honor Asian businessesand leaders for championing sustainable and socially responsible businesspractices. The award categories are Social Empowerment, Investment in People,Health Promotion, Green Leadership, Corporate Governance, Circular EconomyLeadership and Responsible Business Leadership. Through the award ceremony,this unique opportunity has provided over 600 attendees to interconnect andcelebrate virtually.
PTT Explorationand Production Public Company Limited or PTTEP is Thailand's leadingexploration and production (E&P) Company with the mission to sustainablyexplore, secure energy resources and produce domestically and around the globewhile generating satisfactory return to stakeholders.
The Forest Restorationfor Eco-learning at Sri Nakhon Kuean Khan Park (Bang Kachao)
PTTEP,the Royal Forest Department and Kasetsart University have jointly initiated"The Forest Restoration for Eco-learning at Sri Nakhon Khuean Khan Park (BangKachao)" project under the initiative of Her Royal Highness Princess MahaChakri Sirindhorn since 2013. Bang Kachao, also known as Bangkok's green lungsfor its fresh and clean air, lies south of Bangkok in Samut Prakan Province.The area has a unique character and a great diversity of flora and fauna. Therestoration project puts an emphasis on Bang Kachao's ecological character andthe principle of sustainability with the goal of creating a forest with adiversified forest structure and ecologically sustainable forest management, aswell as, building an eco-learning network and furthering conservation efforts thatwill maintain these "green lungs" for the people of Bangkok and surroundingprovinces.
Preserving theEnvironment for the Future
PTTEPhas defined a framework to implement corporate social responsibility (CSR)initiatives globally in four themes, which are Basic Needs, Education,Environment and Culture. The Forest Restoration for Eco-learning at Sri NakhonKhuean Khan Park Project is one of PTTEP's key projects to preserve theenvironment which reflects PTTEP's commitment towards business sustainabilityin which economic, environmental, and social factors are integrated. Thisproject was initiated under the strategic planning process includingStakeholder Analysis, Development of Strategic Projects, Implementation andMonitoring and Evaluation.
Thestrategic plan was designed with three key drivers of project success whichare:
1) Tocreate an urban forest with a diversified forest structure and ecologicallysustainable forest management by growing additional plants and threatenedspecies with the forest rehabilitation process
2) Toinitiate a nature learning centre
3) Todevelop learning processes and promote ecological and cultural tourism uniqueto the area.
Theproject implementation comprised of Stakeholder Engagement, Green SpaceDevelopment and Research Study. Realizing that the success of the projectdemands collaboration with various stakeholders, PTTEP has engaged amongconcerned parties include Chaipattana Foundation, the Office of Royal Projects,the Royal Forest Department, Kasetsart University's Faculty of Forestry, LocalAuthority, Community and Local Academic Institution.
Achievements and Impact
Over the last 7 years since2013, the program has generated impacts on society at large. In terms ofEnvironmental Impact, this project has helped to create a forest with adiversified forest structure and ecologically sustainable forest management, aswell as, building an eco-learning network.
A research conducted in 2011by Thailand Greenhouse Gas Management Organisation and the Faculty of Forestry,Kasetsart University, showed that green space in Bang Kachao could absorb anaverage 6,000 tons of carbon dioxide annually and produce six million tons ofoxygen per day for the city of seven million people. The ecological researchstudy conducted by Kasetsart University during 2014-2019 showed that the23.68-hectare area of the park absorbed 1,360 tons of carbon dioxide.
The 6.4-hectare forestrestoration consisting of three ecological systems, the project has planted16,700 trees with 54 species resulting in the increasing number of tree speciesfrom 90 species in 2014 to 126 species in 2019 or 40% increase. As a directresult of the forest restoration at Sri Nakhon Khuean Khan Park, the researchalso shows the increasing number of wildlife species from 29 species in 2014 to38 wildlife species or 31% increase, plus over 100 species of birds or 40%increase accounting for about 10% of all bird species in Thailand. To date, 360youth have participated in the "Youth Guide Volunteering" program which helpedraise awareness on environmental conservation among the younggeneration.
In terms of economic impact,the survey shows the increasing number of visitors from 50,000 visitors in 2013to 400,000 visitors in 2019. To date, there are over 1,000 disabled visitors.With this regard, the project helped increasing the average income of localcommunities from 285,575 THB or 9,200 USD per year before 2013 to 333,473 THBor 10,760 USD THB per year in 2018 or 17% increase.
In terms of Societal impact,this project has helped to promote the "Friendly Design" concept in Thailand tocreate nature classroom that is usable to everyone, regardless of their age orability which has become a role model for others.
PTTEPwill continue to work creatively under the concept of "Natural Classroom" by applyingthe knowledge bases on biodiversity and carbon absorption in the area of23.68-hectare of forest restoration to improve the interpretive signs, as wellas creating digital learning media and establishing research project to createinnovations in natural resources and environment management for practicalimplementation in the area.
Inaddition, there are plans to improve the building to accommodate the increasingnumber of visitors based on the "Friendly Design" concept that considers alltypes of visitors. To raise awareness, PTTEP will continue expanding the youthnetwork for conservation, arranging the volunteer activities for PTTEP staff,and promoting tourism activities by collaborating with local community networksto enhance income and publicize projects. PTTEP will ensure project sustainabilitythrough community engagementand strategic collaboration with government agencies and academic institutionsfor greateroutcomes in the future.
About Enterprise Asia
EnterpriseAsia is a non-governmental organization in pursuit of creating an Asia that isrich in entrepreneurship as an engine towards sustainable and progressiveeconomic and social development within a world of economic equality. Its twopillars of existence are investment in people and responsible entrepreneurship.Enterprise Asia works with governments, NGOs and other organizations to promotecompetitiveness and entrepreneurial development, in uplifting the economicstatus of people across Asia and in ensuring a legacy of hope, innovation andcourage for the future generation. For further information, visit www.enterpriseasia.org.
About Asia Responsible Enterprise Awards
The Asia Responsible Enterprise Awards program recognizes and honorsAsian businesses for championing sustainable and responsible entrepreneurshipin the categories of Green Leadership, Investment in People, Health Promotion,Social Empowerment, Corporate Governance, Circular Economy Leadership andResponsible Business Leadership. For more information, visit: https://enterpriseasia.org/area/.