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Climate Equity receives attention at semiconductor exhibition

09/08/2023 10:47 PM
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Justin Harris, executive director of CEC, speaks at SEMICON Taiwan
Justin Harris, executive director of CEC, speaks at SEMICON Taiwan's session on climate equity in Taipei on Friday. CNA photo Sept. 8, 2023

Taipei, Sept. 8 (CNA) Climate Equity Collaborative (CEC), a public-private partnership co-founded by the U.S.-based National Wildlife Federation that "engages nontraditional partners in climate innovation and climate action," held a special session dedicated to climate change at 2023 SEMICON, in Taipei on Friday.

In the session titled "Climate Equity and Social Impact: The Promise of Chips," this year's SEMICON Taiwan focused on the issue of climate change. The CEC first organized a pavilion centered on climate equity and social impact at SEMICON West in San Francisco in July. The aim was to "make an impact in cooperation with the industry," said Justin Harris, Executive Director of the Climate Equity Collaborative and Vice Chair of the SEMI climate equity and social impact workgroup.

"One of the things [the CEC is] really working on and centering ourselves on is climate education," Harris said at Friday's session. "We're thinking about how to inspire the next generation… to make them feel included in the solution."

He emphasized that the CEC is seeking to "build solutions that are not little projects, which we need to do less, as what we need is big, system projects in order to address the climate crisis." He characterized their approach as "an ecosystem approach," which is "building a partnership across different sectors" including the corporate, the nonprofit, and the government.

One of the system-level projects undertaken is climate education among the young alongside STEM, or even foreign language education, according to Harris.

"Because in the future of a changing climate, every job is a climate job. It used to be that climate change was only one department -- the ESG department, but in the changing climate, every department is a climate department," he stressed, adding that they now have pilot activities in the US, Japan, Taiwan and Singapore, partnering with schools.

SEMI President and CEO Ajit Manocha, who attended the session to show support, agreed that targeting the younger generation is crucial. He especially addressed the young people in the audience, telling them that while there have been many talks about the climate change issue during SEMICON meetings, including at the CEO Summit, it is "the younger generation who are the future of this planet."

He also stressed the importance of technology and collaboration of multiple stakeholders in finding a solution. "As we speak here, there's a G20 conference going on in New Delhi, India, and the agenda is 3Cs -- conflict, Covid, and climate. I say this is an incomplete agenda, as there's a fourth C, which is chips," Manocha quipped. "Today in Taiwan here, we're putting the fourth C in action, because technology will enable the solution for the climate [change problem]."

He then quoted former Israel president Shimon Peres, saying "politics divides, technology unites" (Peres' original words were "politics divides, science unites.")

Friday's session also invited experts working on the circular economy to present their business models.

Jackie Wang (王家祥), founder of REnato Lab, a company that "assists [firms] in creating practical, adaptable, and innovative solutions through effective use of resources to achieve emission reduction goals," for example, introduced a service, based on the logic of the circular economy, of his company.

"Our team seeks to help firms achieve a decrease in their scope 3 emissions [emissions not produced by the company or its assets but indirectly by the supply chain of the product], obtain the 'digital product passport' disclosing a product's environmental footprint and recycling-related information required by the EU, and earn new income by using resources more efficiently such as extending the lifespan of products through repair and resale," Wang said.

BYTE International Co founder Michael Lin (林志青), whose company's business model is to "recycle, reuse, and replace" electronic products, also shared the idea of IT product taking the form of "PaaS," or "Platform as a Service," "like Netflix or Spotify, you enjoy the content but don't have to own a physical object."

"People's purchasing habits will need to change in this green revolution," he said.

(By Alison Hsiao) Editem/AW

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