Of all the countries on the Asian content, Singapore tops the list in terms of eco-friendliness. Studies carried out by leading environmental institutions, including Yale University and the United Nations, rank Singapore fourteenth globally and first in Asia on the Environmental Performance Index. Unfortunately, Singapore’s neighbors lag behind with the next Asian country being Malaysia, which comes in at a distant 63rd position.
It’s important to understand that Singapore is both a city and an island nation – commonly referred to as a city-state.
Former Prime Minister Lee Kuan believes that one day Singapore will be referred to as the City in the Garden. His commitment to implementing eco-friendly agendas while in office had a major impact on Singapore catapulting a position as a world leader in environmental sustainability. This dream came to fruition through the government of Singapore and its people diligently committing themselves to protecting their environment and deploying green technology.
Singapore, like other Asian countries, is developing at an astronomical rate in an environmentally responsible way. It’s a fantastic location for both up-and-coming and veteran entrepreneurs to make their fortune. To help fuel this growth, Singapore’s government now offers the EntrePass visa program to help ambitious entrepreneurs relocate to the country. You may also want to learn, how to get entrepass visa. This helps bring together great minds to work through the challenge of growing an economy, while respecting the planet.
So, what sets Singapore lightyears ahead in becoming an eco-friendly country? How it is able to go toe to toe with other heavyweights in terms of urbanization and technology?
Reducing Energy Use
With an unprecedented rate of urbanization, great environmental challenges need to be overcome. Some of the challenges that will emerge from urbanization include water and air contamination from greenhouse gases, toxic wastes, and traffic congestion.
In order to cut down on the release of greenhouse gases and ensure that urbanization does not conflict with the environment, the government has aimed to ensure that it limits the amount of energy used in both residential and commercial apartments.
Greener Buildings Thanks to Green Mark Guidelines
One of the ways to reduce power consumption is the with the mandated construction of green buildings. Singapore is a densely populated country, and therefore, the need to have adequate housing is very important. Despite being one of the most densely populated countries in the world, Singapore still manages to top the list as one of the eco-friendliest countries worldwide.
So, how do they achieve this? In the year 2005, Singapore put into place the Green Mark scheme, which is an evaluation system that rates buildings with respect to their performance and impact on the environment.
The Green Mark evaluation system largely focuses on cutting down water and energy usage within both commercial and residential buildings. Studies of Singapore’s green initiatives have shown that an office built in accordance with the Green Mark guidelines enjoyed an 11% reduction in total operating expenses, largely thanks to reduced energy and water consumption.
Innovative, Modern Eco-Friendly City Structures
When taking a stroll through Singapore, one cannot help but notice the many modern skyscrapers that provide office and residential space. But, what really jumps out at you is the wavy roof of Canopy Park. Despite its very sophisticated design, the canopy has the simple function of providing cover from the unpredictable tropical weather for the people of Singapore.
The canopy itself is designed to assist in protecting the environment, in addition to providing shelter. It contains solar panels for power and other renewable sources of energy. It also traps rainwater because it is covered with succulent green plants, which make it even more green – literally!
This goes far beyond the mandated green standards for construction of new buildings. The canopy provides an exciting tourist attraction for sophisticated visitors entering and exiting the country via Jewel Changi Airport. This showcases environmental sustainability in a way that’s relatable to leaders of the country.
Understanding the Four Pillars of Environmental Sustainability
Singapore’s Deputy Prime Minister and Coordinating Minister for National Security highlighted four core principles of environmental sustainability in a recent address to the attendees of Ecosperity 2017:
- Sustainable Economy
- Sustainable Living Environment
- Sustainable Development of Our People
- International Collaboration
These four pillars summarize how Singapore has been able to successfully balance the needs of the planet, its people and the economy that supports them. You can read an excerpt of the speech here.
In conclusion, Singapore is an exciting example of what industrialists, environmentalists and governments can accomplish together.