Singapore Green Plan



The Singapore Green Plan (SGP) is Singapore's first environmental blueprint. Released in 1992 by the then Ministry of the Environment (now known as the Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources or MEWR), its objective is to ensure that Singapore could develop an economic growth model that does not compromise its environment. In 2002, a second SGP known as the Singapore Green Plan 2012 (SGP 2012) was launched. By setting a series of environmental targets, the aim of SGP 2012 is to help Singapore attain environmental sustainability. Today, many of the SGP 2012 targets have been met. But to ensure the country’s sustainable development strategies could be maintained until 2030, the Sustainable Singapore Blueprint was unveiled in April 2009.1

History
Singapore’s green efforts can be traced back to the late 1960s when the country was undergoing rapid industrialisation and urbanisation.2 One of the earliest initiatives was the launch of the Garden City – a vision by former Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew in 1967 to turn Singapore into a city with abundant lush greenery and a clean environment.3 This was followed by the implementation of the Environmental Public Health Act in 1969, to strengthen Singapore’s health legislation and improve public health standards.4


Through careful land-use planning and effective pollution control, Singapore had become a world-renowned “garden city” by the late 1980s.5 However, in light of increasing concern over global environmental issues such as global warming and preservation of biodiversity coupled with a growing population that expected higher standards of living, a major policy review was carried out, and thus the Singapore Green Plan was born.6

The Singapore Green Plan issued in May 1992 was the country's first formal plan to balance environmental and developmental needs.7 It was presented at the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (commonly known as the Earth Summit) held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, in June 1992.8 The plan described the policy directions that Singapore would take to become a model “green city” by the year 2000.9

In 1999, a review of this first green plan was initiated to take into account new ideas and concerns that had emerged since 1992 such as transboundary air pollution and climate change caused by greenhouse gas emissions. The outcome was the SGP 2012, launched in August 2002. With the new plan, Singapore wanted to move beyond from just being clean and green and towards attaining environmental sustainability.10 The SGP 2012 was presented at the World Summit on Sustainable Development in Johannesburg, South Africa, in September 2002.11

To keep the SGP 2012 up-to-date, an extensive review was conducted in 2005. Representatives of the 3P (public, private and people) sectors were consulted and public feedback was sought through various platforms such as an internet survey and a public exhibition. After the review, MEWR released the revised edition of the SGP 2012 in March 2006.12

Description
The SGP 2012 is Singapore’s ten-year plan for achieving sustainable development.13 It describes the strategies and programmes that Singapore would adopt to maintain a quality living environment while pursuing economic prosperity.14 It also contains a list of specific targets that need to be met.15 A Coordinating Committee and six Action Programme Committees oversee the development and implementation of action programmes to help Singapore reach the stipulated targets.16


Some of the targets set in the updated SGP 2012 are listed in the following table:17

Focus Area

Selected Targets

Air and climate change  

  • Maintain the Pollutant Standards Index (PSI) for ambient air within the "good" range for 85% of the year and within the "moderate" range for the remaining 15%.18
  • Reduce the ambient Particulate Matter 2.5 (PM 2.5) level to
    within an annual average of 15µg/Nm3 by 2014.19

Water

  • Increase catchment areas to 67% of Singapore's land surface.20
  • Increase the supply of water from non-conventional sources, such as desalination and water reclamation, to at least 25% of Singapore's water demand.21
  • Reduce per capita domestic water consumption to 155 litres a day by 2012.22

Waste management

  • Increase the overall waste-recycling rate to 60% by 2012.23
  • Extend the lifespan of Semakau Landfill to 50 years, strive towards "zero landfill" and "close the waste loop".24

Conserving nature

  • Establish more parks and green linkages.25
  • Set up a National Biodiversity Reference Centre.26

Public health

  • Increase community ownership to sustain a high standard of public health.27
  • Maintain low incidence of vector-borne and food-borne diseases.28

International environment relations

  • Intensify collaboration with partners at regional and global levels to tackle environmental challenges.29

Meeting the targets
Singapore made good progress meeting the targets set by SGP 2012.30 The following are some examples. 

Beyond 2012
In April 2009, the Inter-Ministerial Committee on Sustainable Development (formed in January 2008) launched a new national framework to guide Singapore’s sustainable development efforts up till 2030.42 Called the Sustainable Singapore Blueprint, it has set higher targets than those in the SGP 2012, and introduced several new initiatives such as turning Singapore into a city in a Garden, introducing minimum energy and water efficiency standards for more household appliances, improving the standard and efficiency of public transportation, and creating a Centre for Liveable Cities for knowledge sharing.43 Moving forward, MEWR and other agencies will continue to fulfil the targets set by SGP 2012, as well as those laid out in the Sustainable Singapore Blueprint.44


Timeline
May 1992:
 The Ministry of the Environment issues the first Singapore Green Plan.45

Jun 1992: The Singapore Green Plan is presented at the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.46
Aug 2002: MEWR launches the second Singapore Green Plan, known as the SGP 2012.47
Sep 2002: The SGP 2012 is presented at the World Summit on Sustainable Development in Johannesburg, South Africa.48
Mar 2006: MEWR releases an updated edition of the SGP 2012.49
Jan 2008: Inter-Ministerial Committee on Sustainable Development formed.50
Apr 2009: Sustainable Singapore Blueprint was launched.51



Author
Valerie Chew




References
1. Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources. (2016). Grab our research: Singapore Green Plan. Retrieved 2016, August 11 from Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources website at: http://www.mewr.gov.sg/grab-our-research/singapore-green-plan-2012
2. Moiz, A. (1993). The Singapore Green Plan: Action programmes. Singapore: Times Editions Pte Ltd, p. 9. (Call no.: RSING 363.7095957 SIN)
3. S’pore to become beautiful, clean city within three years. (1967, May 12). The Straits Times, p. 4. Retrieved from NewspaperSG; Lee, K. Y. (2000). From third world to first: The Singapore story: 1965-–2000: Memoirs of Lee Kuan Yew. Singapore: Times Editions: Singapore Press Holdings, p. 118. (Call no.: RSING 959.57092 LEE-[HIS])
4. Republic of Singapore. Government gazette. Acts supplement. (1968, December 28). The Environmental Public Health Act 1968 (Act 32 of 1968). Singapore: [s.n.], p. 315. (Call no.: RSING 348.5957 SGGAS); Singapore. Parliament. Parliamentary debates: Official report. (1968, December 16). Second Reading of the Environmental Public Health Bill (Vol. 28). Singapore: [s.n.], cols. 396–398. (Call no.: RSING 328.5957 SIN) 
5. Moiz, A. (1993). The Singapore Green Plan: Action programmes. Singapore: Times Editions Pte Ltd, p. 9. (Call no.: RSING 363.7095957 SIN)
6. Moiz, A. (1993). The Singapore Green Plan: Action programmes. Singapore: Times Editions Pte Ltd, pp. 9—10. (Call no.: RSING 363.7095957 SIN)
7. Moiz, A. (1993). The Singapore Green Plan: Action programmes. Singapore: Times Editions Pte Ltd, p. 10. (Call no.: RSING 363.7095957 SIN
8. Moiz, A. (1993). The Singapore Green Plan: Action programmes. Singapore: Times Editions Pte Ltd, pp. 10–11. (Call no.: RSING 363.7095957 SIN)
9. Moiz, A. (1993). The Singapore Green Plan: Action programmes. Singapore: Times Editions Pte Ltd, p. 11. (Call no.: RSING 363.7095957 SIN)
10. Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources. (2016). Grab our research: Singapore Green Plan. Retrieved 2016, August 11 from Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources website at: http://www.mewr.gov.sg/grab-our-research/singapore-green-plan-2012
11. Ministry of Information, Communications and the Arts. (2002, September 4). Speech by Minister Lim Swee Say, at the World Summit on Sustainable Development, 04 September 2002, 12.00 AM. Retrieved from National Archives of Singapore website: http://www.nas.gov.sg/archivesonline/
12. Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources. (2016). Grab our research: Singapore Green Plan. Retrieved 2016, August 11 from Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources website at: http://www.mewr.gov.sg/grab-our-research/singapore-green-plan-2012
13. Chua, L. H. (2002). The Singapore green plan 2012: Beyond clean and green towards environmental sustainability. Singapore. Ministry of the Environment, p. iv. (Call no.: RSING 363.70095957 CHU)
14. Chua, L. H. (2002). The Singapore green plan 2012: Beyond clean and green towards environmental sustainability. Singapore. Ministry of the Environment, pp. iv–vii. (Call no.: RSING 363.70095957 CHU)
15. Chua, L. H. (2002). The Singapore green plan 2012: Beyond clean and green towards environmental sustainability. Singapore. Ministry of the Environment, p. x. (Call no.: RSING 363.70095957 CHU)
16. Singapore. Environmental Protection Division, National Environment Agency. (2004). Annual report 2003. Singapore: National Environment Agency, p. 7. (Call no.: RCLOS 363.7095957 SNEA)
17. Foo, S. L. (Ed.). (2006). The Singapore Green Plan 2012. Singapore: Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources, p. 5. (Call no.: RSING 363.70095957 SIN)
18. Foo, S. L. (Ed.). (2006). The Singapore Green Plan 2012. Singapore: Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources, p. 7. (Call no.: RSING 363.70095957 SIN)
19. Foo, S. L. (Ed.). (2006). The Singapore Green Plan 2012. Singapore: Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources, p. 7. (Call no.: RSING 363.70095957 SIN)
20. Foo, S. L. (Ed.). (2006). The Singapore Green Plan 2012. Singapore: Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources, p. 10. (Call no.: RSING 363.70095957 SIN)
21. Foo, S. L. (Ed.). (2006). The Singapore Green Plan 2012. Singapore: Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources, p. 10. (Call no.: RSING 363.70095957 SIN)
22. Foo, S. L. (Ed.). (2006). The Singapore Green Plan 2012. Singapore: Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources, p. 10. (Call no.: RSING 363.70095957 SIN)
23. Foo, S. L. (Ed.). (2006). The Singapore Green Plan 2012. Singapore: Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources, p. 12. (Call no.: RSING 363.70095957 SIN)
24. Foo, S. L. (Ed.). (2006). The Singapore Green Plan 2012. Singapore: Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources, p. 12. (Call no.: RSING 363.70095957 SIN)
25. Foo, S. L. (Ed.). (2006). The Singapore Green Plan 2012. Singapore: Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources, p. 14. (Call no.: RSING 363.70095957 SIN)
26. Foo, S. L. (Ed). (2006). The Singapore Green Plan 2012. Singapore: Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources, p. 14. (Call no.: RSING 363.70095957 SIN)
27. Foo, S. L. (Ed). (2006). The Singapore Green Plan 2012. Singapore: Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources, p. 15. (Call no.: RSING 363.70095957 SIN)
28. Foo, S. L. (Ed). (2006). The Singapore Green Plan 2012. Singapore: Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources, p. 15. (Call no.: RSING 363.70095957 SIN)
29. Foo, S. L. (Ed). (2006). The Singapore Green Plan 2012. Singapore: Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources, p. 17. (Call no.: RSING 363.70095957 SIN)
30. Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources. (2016). Grab our research: Singapore Green Plan. Retrieved 2016, August 11 from Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources website at: http://www.mewr.gov.sg/grab-our-research/singapore-green-plan-2012
31. Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources. (2016). Air and climate change. Retrieved 2016, August 11 from Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources website at: http://www.mewr.gov.sg/docs/default-source/default-document-library/grab-our-research/1-airclimatechange.pdf
32. Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources. (2016). Air and climate change. Retrieved 2016, August 11 from Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources website at: http://www.mewr.gov.sg/docs/default-source/default-document-library/grab-our-research/1-airclimatechange.pdf
33. Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources. (2016). Water. Retrieved 2016, August 11 from Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources website at: http://www.mewr.gov.sg/docs/default-source/default-document-library/grab-our-research/2-water.pdf
34. Public Utilities Board. (2010, May 3). Opening of Singapore’s fifth and largest NEWater plant, the Sembcorp NEWater plant [Press release]. Retrieved from National Archives of Singapore website: http://www.nas.gov.sg/archivesonline/
35. Ong, M. A. (2005). Towards environmental sustainability: State of the environment report 2005. Singapore: Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources, p. 26. (Call no.: RSING 363.72095957 ONG); Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources. (2016). Water. Retrieved 2016, August 11 from Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources website at: http://www.mewr.gov.sg/docs/default-source/default-document-library/grab-our-research/2-water.pdf
36. Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources. (2016). Waste Management. Retrieved 2016, August 11 from Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources website at: http://www.mewr.gov.sg/docs/default-source/default-document-library/grab-our-research/3-wastemgmt.pdf
37. Ng, P., et. al. (Eds.). (2011). Singapore biodiversity: An encyclopedia of the natural environment and sustainable development. Singapore: Editions Didier Millet, p. 206. (Call no.: RSING 333.95095957 SIN)
38. Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources. (2016). Greenery. Retrieved 2016, August 11 from Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources website at: http://www.mewr.gov.sg/docs/default-source/default-document-library/grab-our-research/4-nature.pdf
39. Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources. (2016). Public Health. Retrieved 2016, August 11 from Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources website at: http://www.mewr.gov.sg/docs/default-source/default-document-library/grab-our-research/5-publichealth.pdf
40. Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources. (2016). International Environmental Relations. Retrieved 2016, August 11 from Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources website at: http://www.mewr.gov.sg/docs/default-source/default-document-library/grab-our-research/6-internationalrelations.pdf
41. Tan, T. (2008, June 23). Summit to tackle problems of cities. The Straits Times, p. 18. Retrieved from NewspaperSG.
42. Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources. (2016). Grab our research: Singapore Green Plan. Retrieved 2016, August 11 from Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources website at: http://www.mewr.gov.sg/grab-our-research/singapore-green-plan-2012
43. Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources. (2016). Grab our research: Singapore Green Plan. Retrieved 2016, August 11 from Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources website at: http://www.mewr.gov.sg/grab-our-research/singapore-green-plan-2012; Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources. (2016). Our Home, Our Environment, Our Future: Sustainable Singapore Blueprint 2015, p. 10. Retrieved 2017, March 31 from Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources website at: http://www.mewr.gov.sg/ssb/files/ssb2015.pdf
44. Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources. (2016). Grab our research: Singapore Green Plan. Retrieved 2016, August 11 from Ministry of the Environment and Water Reso
rces website at: http://www.mewr.gov.sg/grab-our-research/singapore-green-plan-2012
45. Moiz, A. (1993). The Singapore Green Plan: Action programmes. Singapore: Times Editions Pte Ltd, p. 10. (Call no.: RSING 363.7095957 SIN)
46. Moiz, A. (1993). The Singapore Green Plan: Action programmes. Singapore: Times Editions Pte Ltd, pp. 10-11. (Call no.: RSING 363.7095957 SIN)
47. Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources. (2016). Grab our research: Singapore Green Plan. Retrieved 2016, August 11 from Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources website at: http://www.mewr.gov.sg/grab-our-research/singapore-green-plan-2012
48. Ministry of Information, Communications and the Arts. (2002, September 4). Speech by Minister Lim Swee Say, at the World Summit on Sustainable Development, 04 September 2002, 12.00 AM. Retrieved from National Archives of Singapore website: http://www.nas.gov.sg/archivesonline/
49. Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources. (2016). Grab our research: Singapore Green Plan. Retrieved 2016, August 11 from Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources website at: http://www.mewr.gov.sg/grab-our-research/singapore-green-plan-2012
50. Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources. (2016). Grab our research: Singapore Green Plan. Retrieved 2016, August 11 from Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources website at: http://www.mewr.gov.sg/grab-our-research/singapore-green-plan-2012
51. Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources. (2016). Grab our research: Singapore Green Plan. Retrieved 2016, August 11 from Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources website at: http://www.mewr.gov.sg/grab-our-research/singapore-green-plan-2012



Further resources
Chua, G. (2010, February 24). Health of rivers in the spotlightThe Straits Times, p. 3. Retrieved from NewspaperSG.


Chua, G. (2010, March 9). Dry spell: Enough water, but conservation still vitalThe Straits Times, p. 6. Retrieved from NewspaperSG.

Hooi, J. (2010, May 4). NEWater will meet 40% of demand by 2020: SM GohThe Business Times, p. 3. Retrieved from NewspaperSG.

Johnson, H. D. (2008). Green plans: Blueprint for a sustainable earth. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press.
(Call no.: R 333.7 JOH)

Mulchand, A. (2008, June 25). Singapore is getting greenerThe Straits Times, p. 33. Retrieved from NewspaperSG.

Ramchandani, N. (2009, August 4). Sembcorp NEWater plant starts operationsThe Business Times, p. 5. Retrieved from NewspaperSG.

Singapore. Ministry of the Environment. (1992). The Singapore Green Plan: Towards a model green city. Singapore: SNP Publishers.

(Call no.: RSING 363.7095957 SIN)

Singapore. Ministry of the Environment. (2015). Sustainable Singapore Blueprint. Retrieved 2016, August 11 from Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources website at: http://www.mewr.gov.sg/ssb/files/ssb2015.pdf



The information in this article is valid as at 17 August 2016 and correct as far as we are able to ascertain from our sources. It is not intended to be an exhaustive or complete history of the subject. Please contact the Library for further reading materials on the topic.

 

Subject
Law and government>>Environmental protection>>Environmental policy
Nature conservation
Environmental protection--Singapore
Nature>>Nature Conservation
Politics and Government
Environmental policy--Singapore