25 August 2008

Sustainable Singapore: few voices for our wild places

At mid-point of the call for public feedback for a Sustainable Singapore, more than 700 responses have been received.
A quick and UNexhaustive review of the 600+ responses downloadable from the website show that most focus on renewable energy, 3Rs and other brown issues.

There are few voices for conserving our wild places. In fact many suggestions may harm them. And many many show quite a poor understanding of key sustainability issues. Some are downright disturbing.

We have until the end of October to give feedback.

On 28 Aug (Thu), Green Drinks is also planning to discuss "How Sustainable is Singapore's Vision?" to consolidate some feedback on the issue. More details on this event.

Here's some extracts of the 600+ responses

#358: "Remember the old fisherman village located at Pasir Ris Park (Elias there) and it long stretch of makan stalls. They were good and people like it so much and of course including me. Is great esp during the wkend so crowded not the local people but also the westerner. Is a great family gathering place. But I do not the whole area gone."

#490: "What is missing in this otherwise perfect environment to is the element of nature, not just in the rural areas, but right in the city. For instance, why can't we introduce some small animals like ducks and goose in our city parks and water bodies. They are generally harmless. Most important of all, they remind us that human beings should learn to live with other creatures graciously"

#332: "More documentaries of (our) fauna and flora, merryweather and people, ordinary but make a difference because they care, their effort and their message. "

#609: "Land reclamation from the sea, due to economic and environmental factors, will not be feasible beyond a prescribed depth . As the coastal areas of Singapore become increasingly congested, the idea of building structures offshore becomes a compelling necessity even before the end of the new century. Today's vision, perhaps, is of the Megafloat: a giant structure of multiple platforms, both buoyant and non-buoyant, joined together to form a new morphology of technologically advanced infrastructures imaginatively adapted to offshore aquatic environment." (with lots of details provided on megafloats).

#297: "A 30 to 80 metre wide mangrove barrier can be planted to stop erosion and reduce the risk of rising sea levels inundating parts of the country, especially the reclaimed areas."

#331: "Although being an island Singapore lacks a nice beach/resort comparable for example to those at Bintan. If we had a nice beach with all the facilities (hotel, restaurants etc) in a remote location of Singapore (i.e. where one would feel being on a holiday and not in a city), it would probably prevent some Singaporean travelling abroad for a beach stay. Having a decent beach resort in Singapore would certainly increase the quality of life and at the same time reduce travelling to other locations just for the sake of being at a nice beach."

#351: "I have one suggestion, though, our beaches and parks are getting better, there is still much room for improvement to make it more green and clean for the general public. We dont have much good beach (except Sentosa), govt can further improve the beach and its surroundings to have the green effect felt more (amenities). More people will use and distress and relax by the beach. Beaches like East Coast, West Coast, Pasir Ris, Changi, Nicoll drive, etc,. have much to be desired. "

#203: "To see the Siberian cranes flying across the sky in the heartland of Singapore in the hue of the beautiful dusk was as wild as a wild dream in the past, now; we are enjoying their graceful presence with us to hurray life could be so beautiful with these shimmering white birds gliding and tango-ing right before our eyes in the sky, wow, it is like in a fairy.land! If grazing of sheep and herding of cattle in our West Coast, rampart along the stretch of road all the way down the w.c road beside the sea to prevent them from jumping to the road to be crushed by passing vehicles, to sit down in the shades under the trees planted for their noonday-cool to enjoy seeing the satisfaction of them in regurgitation, hand in hand with mine betrothed wife growing old gracefully together, I don't mind sleep through the scene when the wild dream fulfills, cheers!"

#551: A long article about vertical intensive aquaponics farming: fish tanks, located at the void decks or empty office space of each building. "I have approached AVA on an idea about Vertical Farming but so far their response is lukewarm. Their response is that it's too capital intensive and they are confident of getting our food sources from other countries at a cheaper price."

#581: "I believe Singapore will more scenic and beautiful place with some stream/river flowing through our HDB heartland. This creation will 'soften' the vast concrete build up/landscape. We can do this by damming the huge concrete drain in many of the estate like the one I seen in at Yishun Industrial Park A and Sungei Tengal. Another plus point is that this project will enable us to increase our water storage capacity/water catchment which is also our national priority."

#179: "Full Protection and Preserving of Forest,Water,Energy,Air Quality, Farm Area (Kranji Countryside),Species of Animals in air,water and land like Different kind of Fish,Land Animals and Birds and Wetlands Here in Whole SINGAPORE!!!!"

#302: "Singapore is becoming a city which is no longer pleasant to live in. It used to be, back when there were lots of trees and parks, less needless shopping mall and condo developments, and far fewer cars on the road. The things you are destroying are the things that make Singapore unique, beautiful. Sentosa Island is slowly being destroyed. Stop the development. Okay, complete the casino and maybe one more hotel, but there are more and more developments happening whichjust means the greenery and wildlife becomes almost non-existent. Why do people go to Sentosa? To escape the noise, the buildings, the clutter of the city. What are you turning Sentosa into? A noisy, built-up, clutterd place just like you're doing to the rest of the island. Stop it!! Just stop it."

#612: "Use rainwater instead of creating more reservoirs which will no doubt destroy the little coastal flora and fauna we have left. Maybe have water tanks in homes - like how Australia's coping with their drought. But think of ways to do it such that the hydrology of the island is not affected too much - less freshwater flowing into the seas could affect salinity and thus health of coastal ecosystems like Sungei Buloh Wetland reserve and Labrador Nature Reserve"

#49: "Support coral around singapore water. put dead people ashes under the seabed to promote coral development. with coral u have more fish and no tsunami. it promote fishing industry and tourism too. like diving in future. Its a good idea since u have two resort in singapore now."

#344: "Farm our own high quality Omega 3 rich feeder fish. By introducing fast growing high protein feeder fish to our manmade reservoirs. Being lucustrine species they will not intrude into freshwater streams or survive in saltwater where our indigenous fauna and flora thrive. To be safer these species can be introduced to our many reservoirs built or building outside the nature reserve zone, even in the live firing area."

#507: "Singapore is blessed with the coastal defences of the tropics- mangrove and reefs. Every effort must be made to encourage and increase both. Those are sustainable. Food availability will alter. Singapore must do all it can to gain advantage from this. Broad based fish farming, hydroponics are two examples for encouragement.

Singapore talks of being a Garden City and its Parks and Botanical Gardens are good examples but we are woefully short of natural vegetation. All forest patches and areas must be maintained and increased. Sentosa is lost, but Ubin and the other islands must not be. Golf courses must be an unsustainable and anti-social land use. One golf course a year for at least 10 years should have its lease revoked and the land returned to a natural state. The most under-used amenity is the water areas of reservoirs and the coast. PUB must come out of its ivory tower and promote its high value asset by encouraging water sports of every type."

#619: "Regarding Pulau Ubin, hopefully the government can retain its rustic charm and not urbanise it, so that the future generation can still witness its beauty."

#674: "I believe singaporean are always looking for adventure in the city, organise tour outside of singapore. In singapore, and the many islands of singapore have not been fully develop as an attraction for the singaporean and the tourists. Coral recultivation for future sea exploring, promote more kelong for fish cultivation village, resort island, farm resort to make the surrounding of singapore more vibrant and attractive. This will make more singaporean to spend the money locally reduce the tendency to go malaysia, indonesia or far away country for relaxation/vacation."

#118: "the lovely animals and birds are gone, the forest are demonished, how can Singapore ever be a lively city ? It always looks "dead" to me. look at the plants and flowers that has been growth islandwide, they seens "dead" , "lifeless". whenever i see them, i always think there is something missing, like an empty house, with nobody inside, dead silence, totally if not almost , "dead". "

#356: "how about a bridge connecting to a nature park in malaysia ? the people will just walk across the bridge to visit the plants and animals"

You can download all 600+ responses (xl format) from the Sustainable Singapore website.

1 comment:

  1. I am in Aquaponics, using waste water from aquaculture to grow herbs. using only 10% of the water use for normal farming. not only save water(agriculture use the most water as compare to other industry)at the same time do not pollute the environment.
    With the weather getting wild, (Singpore get 100mm of rain in 11/2 hours.)producing enough food for all will be a challenge. Many countries are face food shortage iisue. we should look into producing our own supply.Signing contract for food supply with other country is fine for peaceful and when food in plenty. when countries are not producing enough food for thier own people, i don't think they will honor the contract.

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