Friday, May 14, 2010

Study: Singapore the worst environmental offender

Results of a study jointly done by NUS and the University of Adelaide reveals that relatively to other countries, Singapore is the worst environmental offender. Though there is lots of preaching of being a "Green City" and having "Eco-friendly policies", the fact is, Singapore talk the talk, but does not "walk the walk"

Singapore's headlong rush into developing a modern megalopolis over the last 30 years had taken a terrible toll on its natural environment.

There are a few observations I've made in the past which suggests that Singapore attempts to look Green, but not sure whether it "does Green"

1) Majority of the public still prefers plastic bags, and there is only a half hearted effort for people to bring their own shopping bags.
2) Everything in Singapore is burnt in incinerators, and I wonder if there are even working filters at the incinerators as I can definitely smell weird chemical smell near Senoko (Tuas area) and Toh Tuck Area.
3) Public is dissuaded to use Hybrid Cars. Prius has a High Road Tax, and Civic Hybrid has much higher road tax compared to Civic, and there is no ROI from the savings in petrol.
4) Singapore still use a lot of old inefficient diesel powered Taxis, buses and Trucks. With cleaner diesel available, there is no attempts to push towards the clean / low emission diesel engine for all vehicles as the "Tax system" does not support this.
5) Singapore's diesel is still not Euro IV compliant even though it sells Euro IV standard is common in Europe which offers tax incentives.
6) With the push for population density, much of the land is used for residential purposes, with little efforts to conserve nature.
7) With the booming economy, much of the older (30 year old) buildings are torn down to rebuild, nicer, taller buildings. There is however little efforts to recycle.
8) Consumers still go for "cheaper" alternative, much like the third world. Cheap products such as shoes, bags, and other daily use products are widely available, and do not have quality checks. These products fail frequently, amounting to more waste.
9) Air-conditioning is widespread everywhere. In schools, army camps, and many other places, none was present 15 years ago, but they are simply everywhere now. With buildings built with lower ceilings, they are also much required.
10) The attitude of the public in general is apathetic towards the environment. It does not concern them if there is no immediate effects. Recycling -- what recycling?

--Iron Bowl

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