Waste to Resource Management Focus Group Discussion

Category: Forums/ Seminars

Date

May 31, 2014

About

Hosted by Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources (MEWR).

SMU Verts had the chance to attend the focus group discussion on waste to resource management and interesting ideas will become a part of the Sustainable Singapore Blueprint.

Dr Vivian Balakrishnan, Minister for the Environment and Water Resources hosted this discussion. He shared:
More than 21 tonnes of waste is generated every day, only 61% is recycled and 39% of it goes to the landfill. Our current landfill, pulau semakau has limited space and will run out of space by 2035-2045. He also acknowledged that there are barriers to recycling now and many concerns were about the inconvenience of segregating waste. Domestic recycling is really low at 20% of which food recycling is 13% while that of plastic is 11%.
“More people lives could saved by environment engineers as compared to doctors.”
Key issues discussed today were
1) Towards zero waste vision
2) Extended producer responsibility
3) Household waste segregation.

“Waste management is a logistics and supply problem.”
Interesting ideas include converting food waste to fish feed used in fish farm or for generation of energy. Another idea proposed was the upgrade of community gardens into environmental projects where composted food waste will be used as fertilisers.
In summary, key considerations for changes to policy will be more on education, putting the relevant infrastructure in place and implementing more regulations.

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