Saturday, September 8, 2007

Today's Saturday Special featured the PUB's plan to incorporate more water features in urban living. I'm pleasantly surprised to learn that the Bishan Park canal which my balcony faces will be spruced up. Right now it's just a canal with concrete walls but soon it'll have green banks. I thoroughly enjoy my balcony's view of Bishan Park but I've always found the canal too concretized. Maybe this means the value of our unit will increase as well? Lol. I wholeheartedly agree with PUB's stance. It's good to live next to nature and water features lower the temperature, not to mention they are soothing. This will really help complete Singapore's image of a garden city. But I think we should go one step further and make Singapore an 'eco-city'. What I mean is that all our structures and buildings should be built with the purpose of being environmentally-friendly. This includes being fitted with electricity-saving lightbulbs, utilizing solar power etc. We should have a stream in Orchard Road like that in South Korea. I think recycling in Singapore is not nearly as popular as I would like it to be. We produce tonnes of garbage which could be put to better use. The industry is a potentially lucrative one. The options we can adopt to become eco-friendly are limitless.

Some steps me and my family take to be environmentally-friendly (you can try them!):
1) Turn off electricity when not in use.
This may seem like something very simple, but we often forget to do so. Also, turn down the fan speed or air-con temp. if it is unneccesarily high and take your bath as soon as the water is hot enough. Ensuring sufficient ventilation helps cool your house so that you don't have to turn up the air-con.
2) Separate things that can be recycled from your rubbish and place them in recycling bins. Location of recycling bins can be found here:
3) Decline plastic bags when you don't need them. Just put your buys in your bag or bring along a separate shopping/ plastic bag.
4) When buying takeaways, bring along your own reusable containers. If you can, don't take the disposable cutlery. Use your own at home. It's not too much hassle to wash cutlery.
5) Install a half-flush.
6) Shop for second-hand clothes and bags at flea markets, Salvation Army, organised swops or online. Share clothes with your mum if you can! This applies to other goods like furniture as well. It's cheap too. Refer too
7) Buy in bulk to save on packaging material. For example, instead of buying one small box of biscuits per week, buy one big box of biscuits to last a few weeks.
8) Collect some drink cans, cartons, cardboard etc. to use when doing school projects/ personal crafts. Much better than buying materials.
9) When using the photocopy machine at school, lower the ink level. Switch your printer setting to draft when printing black-and-white. Usually the words remain perfectly legible even when they're not as dark. I just found out that ink cartridges can be recycled too ! (this is a very useful website).
10) Don't do laundry in small loads. For bottoms (pants, skirts etc.) worn just once, they usually don't have to be washed. Just hang them up to sun and wear them another time before washing. Wear school t-shirts (orientation tee etc.) as home shirts.

I'm sure there are many more ways one can think of.

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