CASBEE City vs MURNInets

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Recently we welcomed a Japanese delegate from the National Institute for Environmental Studies (NIES) which is a research partner of Iskandar Regional Authority (IRDA) to our office in Wisma UOA Damansara, Kuala Lumpur. Also present were a team of researchers from Keio University, Japan who are conducting research on Application of CASBEE-City Assessment Tool on Malaysian Cities. The main purpose of the meeting is to discuss the possibilities to collaborate with MURNInets team.

Anyway, what is CASBEE-City? Based on presentation by Prof. Toshiharu Ikaga (Keio University), CASBEE is an acronym for Comprehensive Assessment System for Built Environment Efficiency. “CASBEE for Cities” (hereinafter referred as “CASBEE City”) is a system to comprehensively evaluate the environmental performance of cities using a triple bottom-line approach namely “environment”, “society” and “economy”.

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CASBEE City includes two different sets of assessment item namely Environmental Quality and Activities (Q) and Environmental Impact (L). These two items consist of 3 Major Category, 10 Middle Category and 29 Subcategory (indicators). In order to assess the city, a hypothetical boundary of the related city need to determined. Improvement of Environmental Quality and Activities (Q) and reduction in negative Environmental Impact (L) within the hypothetical boundary leads to higher BEE value, thus a better rating. We also learned that CASBEE City tool is capable to assess future plans toward sustainable development.

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However, there are some challenges for assessing Malaysian cities using this tool since it was designed based on Japanese framework and structure. Therefore, CASBEE-City needs to be adapted and customised into Malaysian framework in order to assess Malaysian cities accordingly.

Various issues were deliberated and discussed, especially matters related to the availability of statistical data, data sources, the scope of the differences and similarities between CASBEE-City and MURNInets. The purpose of ‘CASBEE-City Application to Malaysia Cities Project’ is to understand the actual Built Environment Efficiency (BEE) condition of these cities and make them more sustainable as a leading developing model area in Asia.

So what about MURNInets? MURNInets is an acronym for Malaysian Urban-Rural National Indicators Network on Sustainable Development. It is also a system to determine the sustainability level of an urban area by using a set of indicators. However, MURNInets was designed based on Malaysian context and have a different method of analysis and a different set of raw data needed. MURNInets framework consists of 3 Dimensions, 21 Themes and 36 Indicators to evaluate sustainability performance of Malaysian cities based on certain target.

In my opinion, both CASBEE City and MURNInets are useful tools for planners and decision makers. Although they use different techniques of assessment, the result can be used to complement each other in order to seek sustainability of cities through different perspectives.

The meeting chaired by Deputy Director of Rnd Division, Tn. Hj. Muhammad Ridzuan bin Arshad.

The meeting chaired by Deputy Director of Rnd Division, Tn. Hj. Muhammad Ridzuan bin Arshad.

Briefing of the Outline of CASBEE City by Prof. Toshiharu Ikaga from Keio University, Japan.

Briefing of the Outline of CASBEE City by Prof. Toshiharu Ikaga from Keio University, Japan.

Dr. Shamsaini bt Shamsuddin, Team Leader of MURNInets National Operational Center explained to the Japanese delegate.

Dr. Shamsaini bt Shamsuddin, Team Leader of MURNInets National Operational Center explained to the Japanese delegate.

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