PAP MPs call for a more sustainable Singapore with Parliamentary motion

29 Jan 2021 3 min read

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Members of the Government Parliamentary Committee (GPC) for Sustainability and the Environment have filed a Parliamentary motion to address climate change and its impact on Singapore. The first-ever motion on the issue was initiated with key recommendations that the People’s Action Party’s youth wing, Young PAP (YP) has put forth in its position paper on sustainability issues.  

Chairperson of GPC for Sustainability and the Environment Louis Ng, Deputy Chairperson Poh Li San, and members Cheryl Chan, Gan Thiam Poh, Hany Soh and Don Wee filed the private member’s motion for the Parliament sitting on 1 February 2021.

The motion states: “That this House calls on the Government, in partnership with the private sector and the people of Singapore, to deepen and accelerate efforts to mitigate and adapt to climate change, and to embrace sustainability in the development of Singapore.”

Chairperson of GPC for Sustainability and the Environment Louis Ng said, “Climate change is an existential threat that we cannot ignore. The recommendations in the motion include considerations and input gathered from a series of public consultations with environmental groups, industry, academia, and Singaporeans. We hope to get the whole House to support this motion.”

GPC members who will be speaking about the motion and Young PAP activists who have worked closely with the members to craft the motion.

The GPC members have been working closely with YP to craft this motion. Specifically, YP organised numerous focus group discussions with sustainability advocates, representatives from the industry, academia and members of the public in the past year to gather feedback on its proposals to improve Singapore’s sustainability landscape. The eventual position paper titled “Singapore- A Green Hub” in March 2020 proposed key recommendations on how Singapore could enhance its efforts for a sustainable future. The paper was then updated in November 2020 to include further input and suggestions from the industry.

YP chairman Janil Puthucheary said: ” Working with MPs to push for changes at a legislative level is just one of the many climate change initiatives that our YP activists are working on. Protecting the environment is our collective responsibility. YP will continue to work with and engage Singaporeans in this sustainability journey to make Singapore a better place to live, work and play.”

Chairperson of GPC for Sustainability and the Environment Louis Ng (middle), Deputy Chairperson Poh Li San filed the Parliamentary motion to address climate change and its impact on Singapore.

“Globally, buildings account for one-third of the greenhouse gas emissions, 40 per cent of global energy consumption and resources and 25 per cent of global water consumption. Singapore is a highly urbanised city-state and 82 per cent of our land is built-up areas for residential and commercial builds and public infrastructures. I hope to push for greener buildings in Singapore as that will make a big impact to mitigate climate change.”

Poh Li San
Vice-Chairperson of GPC for Sustainability and the Environment

“Everyone in society has a role to play for a more sustainable environment. The private and public sector in partnership can effect positive changes through accountability framework and adopting technological solutions. I hope we can create an ecosystem and exciting job opportunities through different industry sectors in Singapore’s future.” 

Cheryl Chan
Member of GPC for Sustainability and the Environment

“I hope that everyone can do his or her part in saving the earth and provide a better tomorrow for our children, grandchildren and future generations.” 

Gan Thiam Poh
Member of GPC for Sustainability and the Environment

“I will speak about involving our community in our efforts to raise greater awareness and encourage more to shift to an eco-friendly lifestyle.”

Hany Soh
Member of GPC for Sustainability and the Environment

“To reduce carbon emissions, I am proposing that the Government increases carbon tax gradually based on timeline and quantum. With the proposed tax increase, we would then need to look at how to support Small Medium Enterprises and lower-income families to ensure that they are not the ones ultimately paying for the increase.”

Don Wee
Member of GPC for Sustainability and the Environment

“YP members passionate about sustainability welcomed this chance to draft proposals and work with the Members of Parliament on a motion. After the debates on the motion, we will work with the MPs to conduct another round of public consultation on how to further enhance Singapore’s efforts to mitigate and adapt to climate change.”

Cynthia Mark
YP’s sustainability representative

Cover Image: CNA