Opening Speech by Ms Grace Fu, Minister for Sustainability and the Environment, at the Inaugural Green Plan Conversation on 24 April 2021
Ladies and Gentlemen,
A very good afternoon to all of you. Thank you for joining us for the inaugural Green Plan Conversation.
2 In February this year, the Government launched the Singapore Green Plan 2030 to advance our national agenda on sustainable development.
3 The Green Plan charts ambitious and concrete sectoral targets over the next 10 years that touch on almost every dimension of our lives: from how we produce energy, feed our nation, and green our homes and buildings, to how we strengthen our resilience against rising sea levels and the urban heat island effect.
4 The Green Plan is a national response to climate change. It demonstrates our commitment to ensure that Singapore remains a green and liveable home for many generations to come. The success of this green transition will depend on whether we are able to work collectively as a nation to co-create solutions and tackle climate change together. That is why we are launching the Green Plan Conversations.
5 It is clear that Singaporeans care about our environment. When the Green Plan was launched, it sparked many conversations on the importance of sustainable development, what we are setting out to do, the various priorities and trade-offs involved, and more. We also received many ideas and suggestions from the public via our Green Plan website. We will collate these suggestions, group them by topics, find platforms to have them discussed and evaluated. We are greatly encouraged by the support given to the Green Plan and thank you for your interest.
Collectively Shaping our Sustainability Journey
6 The Green Plan Conversations serves to harness the collective strengths, experiences and resources of Singaporeans. In the spirit of Singapore Together, today’s Conversation was opened for public sign-ups. Half of the participants present are members of public, while the rest of the participants are representatives from the People, Private and Public sectors, including students, teachers, and representatives from NGOs and businesses. Bringing together a diverse group of 100 individuals allows us all to hear different perspectives on how we should chart Singapore’s sustainability journey.
7 We are very encouraged by your response and interest in today’s Conversation. Many of you have indicated that this is your first time participating in an engagement on environmental sustainability. I look forward to hearing your ideas and views on the Green Plan, taking into account Singapore’s challenges and inherent constraints. We will explore our sustainability priorities, the choices and trade-offs we must consider together, and how each of us can play a role.
8 In the upcoming months, the other Ministries which are co-authors of the Green Plan will be organising more Conversations to look at various areas of work. To allow more Singaporeans to contribute their views and help shape our green future, REACH will also explore organising Conversations in vernacular languages.
9 Ultimately, we want to spark meaningful climate action through these Green Plan Conversations. The Government will assess and pursue the ideas that arise from the Conversations and encourage participants to take action through platforms such as Alliances for Action, and Citizens’ Workgroup.
10 Those who require funding support may consider applying for funds such as the $50 million SG Eco Fund. We will announce the first batch of successful SG Eco Fund applicants and their proposals next month.
Cliamte Partnerships with Citizens An Enduring Priority
11 Our platforms and partnerships for joint action with citizens have shown results. For example, we have formed several Citizens’ Workgroups to work on improving household recycling, increasing demand for local produce, and reducing the excessive consumption of disposables. Each one of them have resulted in solutions that are co-create and co-delivered solutions. As part of our Eco Town initiative, we have also worked with Tampines residents on the piloting of Eco Boards that provide real-time figures of water and electricity consumption and the resulting carbon emissions, to help them better manage their utilities consumption.
13 To conclude, the Green Plan is a living plan that will evolve as we develop and refine our strategies as technologies evolve, and as our continuous national engagement progresses. It will be shaped by our conversations and joint efforts. The Green Plan Conversations is central to this process of engaging and working with Singaporeans to co-create and co-deliver sustainability solutions for Singapore.
14 My colleagues and I look forward to meeting you in the breakout rooms to listen to your views and ideas. There will be a dialogue session at the end where we can exchange views as a large group. I hope today’s session will allow us to make connections, learn from one another, and forge fruitful partnerships to build a sustainable Singapore, together.
15 Thank you.