Sector: Energy and Natural Resources

Cacao Pro

The agricultural sector of the Philippines comprises 30% of the workforce and about 12 million people. Challenges from resource depletion, social exclusion and lack of access to technology among others, continue to affect the worsening agro-economic trend in the country. Given this, the national roadmap for the cocoa sector has been set to increase production tenfold, providing sustainable incomes for as many as 130,000 Filipino farmers.


Capacitating Cacao Farmers in Mindanao is a project under the DeveloPPP program of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) in partnership with DEG and Yara Fertilizers Philippines Inc. It is implemented to address cacao farmers’ limited capacity to meet industry demand due to low productivity. This is mainly due to the shortage of viable planting materials and the farmers’ lack of knowledge on crop nutrition, good agricultural practices (GAPs) and post-harvest handling.


The project also aims to increase the efficiency of farmers in cacao production through Yara’s crop nutrition solutions and effective crop handling. Twenty-five local farmers will be trained to become cacao specialists, who will, in turn, provide crop nutrition training to 50 cacao farmers. In addition, model farms will be established and post-harvest processing facilities will be set up in partnership with selected rural-based cooperatives in the area. Through these strategies, the yield of farmers is expected to increase by at least 25 percent and the selling price of the processed beans to increase by at least 10 percent. Eventually, the project will contribute to the country’s achievement of its national target, which is to produce 100,000 MT of dried fermented beans by 2022.

Master of Disaster

From 2000 to 2012, natural disasters in the Philippines took the lives of 12,899 people and injured 138,116. As part of ASSIST’s Social Actions, the board game Master of Disaster was developed to raise awareness among children and stimulate their interest on what leads to man-made disasters and more importantly, teach them how to respond to emergency situations. The game will teach children both, the values of independent thinking and teamwork, in addition to helping them build a strong sense of discipline and strategic decision-making while they are young.


Master of Disaster was created through an iterative development model centered on study and consultation, which ensured both education and entertainment. Gamification experts, disaster response experts, teachers, students and parents all participated in the development of this board game. By mid-2017, we had conducted tests with 200 students of varying ages, across 15 schools and community centers along with the facilitation of 75 teachers. This board game is distributed free of cost to public schools in the most disaster-prone areas.

3CS – Corporate Climate Change Strategies

The CII ITC Centre of Excellence for Sustainable Development (CII CESD) started “Corporate Sustainability Management in Indian Companies” – CoSMIC, an initiative to promote Corporate Sustainability Management (CSM) countrywide and across all sectors in association with GIZ.


The 3CS course, conceived as a part of the CoSMIC program, provides a comprehensive overview of business risks and opportunities, tools to use and strategic questions to consider when developing a Corporate Climate Change Strategy.


In the 1st phase of the CoSMIC project, actual training was used to educate companies. ASSIST, as a partner in the project, developed the content for training sessions including training manuals, campaign materials, references and best practice handbooks. In the 2nd phase of the project, the training was converted into e-learning modules for global outreach. The e-learning modules were uploaded in GIZ’s e-academy portal for public usage. All of the modules were SCORM Compliant to make them compliant with different platforms.

ProGED – Promotion of Green Economic Development

ProGED – Promotion of Green Economic Development is an initiative with the objective of helping micro, small and medium enterprises, as well as government institutions contribute to the economic development, increase awareness and gain knowledge on how to implement environmentally friendly, “climate-smart” and inclusive strategies in the tourism sector of the Philippines.


Funded by GIZ, ProGED focused on the tourism sector due to its high potential for investment and employment. ASSIST performed a series of training on Green Economic Development (GED); conducted a technical session on “Greening MSME Operations”; delivered two training modules: ‘Greening Strategies and Quantitative Benefits’ and ‘Consumption and Cost Monitoring’ and; provided experts and consultations for training delivery.

ACE – Advancing Carbon-Neutral Economy

China is one of the world’s largest emitters of greenhouse gases (GHGs) and a significant contributor to global warming, owing to the rapid growth of the industrial sector. Energy efficiency measures can help in reducing air pollution and generate economic benefits—thus, making it attractive to investors and energy consumers. Creating a better basis for increasing energy efficiency would help the Chinese government meet its 2020 commitment of advancing a more environment-friendly economy.


ASSIST, together with TUV Nord and DEG, developed the ACE initiative with the aim to contribute to advancing a carbon-neutral economy. The project targeted energy-intensive enterprises in four cities in China – namely Shanghai, Tianjin, Guangzhou, and Chongqing. These four locations are among the top most industrialized cities in the country, where resource-intensive industries are concentrated.


To achieve this, the key interventions include 1) conducting a multistakeholder forum; 2) creating an awareness session to highlight the alarming levels of carbon emissions in China and the practices that companies can adopt to curb this amount; 3) developing an online assessment tool for carbon footprint calculation; 4) developing training materials; 5) conducting a Train-the-Trainer workshop; 6) identifying at least 5 carbon-intensive companies and providing technical assistance to become a Carbon Neutral Company; 7) developing a case study report and; 8) conducting a best practices forum.

Mapping Studies on Solid Waste, Renewable Energy and Water Saving Technologies

As part of the initiative to develop H&M’s “Green Industry” strategy for the garment supply chains of Cambodia & Myanmar, ASSIST conducted a mapping of the existing stakeholders on renewable energy.


ASSIST conducted mapping studies and generated reports on solid waste, renewable energy, and water saving technologies. The reports provided a description of the subject’s current conditions in the country, the existing stakeholders and key players and the national solutions/technologies available. The reports also offer a more detailed analysis of the subject specifically in the context of the country’s garment industry and recommend relevant actions for the sector. Following those 6 reports (3 in Cambodia, 3 in Myanmar), H&M requested ASSIST replicate the studies in Vietnam.


Current patterns of energy consumption will lead to increased demand for thermal energy by almost 700% by 2050 when compared to 2005 levels. At the same time, the number of buildings is expected to manifold by 40% which contribute significantly to the increased energy usage. In order to minimize the energy use, we need to maximize the savings by implementing a sustainable Building Management System (BMS) in buildings, which will better manage as well as improve energy usage and performance, through the use of hardware, information, and data.


To achieve these objectives, the project focuses on creating awareness among business owners and decision makers about the importance of sustainable BMS implementation; attempts to enhance capacity among local facility technicians through establishment of state-of-the-art BMS training facility and up-skilling through targeted trainings; and implements pilots as showcases for sustainable BMS at prominent buildings in varied sectors to strengthen awareness.


Currently, CII-GBC, the home of Indian Green Building Council (IGBC) hosts one pilot solution while another IT company in Chennai called Aspire Systems hosts the second pilot – exhibiting significant savings and GHG reduction through a strong BMS solution. Furthermore, the training centre has been established at and in partnership with Dr. Ambedkar Institute of Productivity (AIP) – National Productivity Council (NPC), Chennai, a prestigious central government institute under the Ministry of Industry & Commerce, Government of India – paving way for practical learning, sustained operations and affordable up-skilling among technicians.

ROBUSTPHIL – Resilient Organizations Built for Sustained Transformation of Philippines

Businesses in a country beset by disasters and catastrophes suffer from as much damage as its people. Most victims experience prolonged difficulty when “mission critical” enterprises are not able to get back on their feet soon after a calamity. ASSIST, together with TUV Rheinland Philippines Inc., implemented the project “Resilient Organizations Built for Sustained Transformation of Philippines (ROBUSTPHIL)” as a concrete step in making these mission-critical enterprises resilient. The project aimed to create the much-needed awareness for disaster and crisis preparedness covering the Four Rs: Risk Reduction, Readiness, Response, and Recovery.


The project equipped ten enterprises with the know-how on international standards and best practices that will make them resilient. Some of these international standards include Enterprise Risk Management (ERM), Information Security Management System (ISMS) and Business Continuity Management (BCM).


Through a CEO Forum, the project brought together top decision makers from various critical enterprises to propagate mass awareness on these standards. It also provided technical assistance and support for alignment towards the international standard (ISO 27001) on risk management. A best practice exchange forum was also conducted to share lessons and experiences in relation to climate action to create a multiplier effect. An e-learning toolkit on international standards was also provided and distributed to over 100 enterprises.

LEAP – Leapfrog towards Efficiency And Progress through Low Carbon Economy in Indonesia

The Indonesian manufacturing sector is one of the nation’s largest sources of fossil-fuel derived greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Overall, manufacturing is responsible for over 50 percent of Indonesia’s fossil-fuel emissions (including electricity use within manufacturing) and is continuing to grow at the rate of 6–7 % each year. Most of these sub-sectors are key to the current or future Indonesian economy as measured by a variety of statistics including their value added (textile, garments, transportation equipment, food and beverage), annual growth rate (auto parts, non-metallic minerals) and economic multipliers (food and beverage, textiles).


Jointly funded and implemented by PT TÜV NORD I and DEG, “LEAP – Leapfrog towards Efficiency And Progress through Low Carbon Economy in Indonesia” aimed to reduce GHG emissions in the major industries of the manufacturing sector, achieve energy and material efficiency among participating companies and contribute to poverty reduction by minimizing the impacts of climate change and promoting sustainable development. The project worked towards initiating a low carbon economy in Indonesia through awareness raising and capacity building activities.


The project has reached a number of milestones upon its culmination. It successfully raised awareness on climate change-related topics in the public and private sectors, generated interest among local companies to adopt energy management systems benchmarking ISO 14064 and ISO 50001 (towards reducing their GHG emissions and contribute to the switch towards a low–carbon economy), build local capacity through Training of Trainer Workshops, development of an e-learning kit, e-newsletter, web portal and Best Practices Exchange Forum. Fifteen selected companies also received technical assistance in the form of energy audits and assessment conducted by local trainers and technical experts.