Extended Producer Responsibility System for E-Waste
Sir, I have been raising the tackling of e-waste for many years now. It is an issue close to my heart as I see so much wastage of precious resources.
E-waste that is improperly handled can also be toxic and damage the environment. I am glad we are finally seeing progress in terms of tackling e-waste. E-waste bins are now a common sight in our neighbourhoods and malls.
The Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) System for e-waste ensures the proper handling of e-waste and that valuable resources can be extracted. Given that it has been two years since the e-waste EPR was implemented, can the Ministry provide an update whether the scheme has been successful in increasing e-waste recycling rates? Can the Ministry share what other measures it is studying to further increase e-waste recycling rates?
Disposable Carrier Bag Charge
It has been almost five years since I delivered an Adjournment Motion to call for a charge on single-use carrier bags. Five years later, this has become a reality and we will soon be debating a Bill to make a disposable carrier bag charge at supermarkets compulsory.
Many supermarkets and shops have already started to charge for disposable bags. I am glad that many Singaporeans have adapted to this. I often see shoppers bring their own reusable bags or decline to take disposable bags for small items. I believe we are starting to see a mindset shift.
Can the Ministry share whether we will look into extending the requirements to convenience stores? In particular, the small disposable carrier bags for small convenience stores purchases are often unnecessary.
Can the Government provide a roadmap for the expansion of the disposable carrier bag charge so that people and businesses know where we are heading and can prepare?
Second-hand Smoke in Homes
I am sure Senior Minister of State Amy Khor is tired of hearing me repeat myself and of repeating her replies even though she just told me that she is immune to it.
I continue to raise the issue of second-hand smoke because it continues to be a problem many people face and people continue to have no solutions that will protect them from the dangers of second-hand smoke. Second-hand smoke kills and is a public health issue rather than a neighbourly dispute.
Many times, we tell our residents that the Community Disputes Resolution Tribunals (CDRT) may be a solution.
Let me share the voice of Ms Chong. She shared how even a CDRT court order was powerless to help protect her family from second-hand smoke.
She shared in a forum letter, “A chain-smoking neighbour exposes my family to smoke every single day. The exposure to toxic second-hand smoke has greatly affected our health, living and lives. My mother often suffers from coughing and throat irritation, which make it difficult for her to eat as she chokes easily. We obtained a court order from the CDRT in June 2022, but this was not enough to stop the smoking.”
To help Ms Chong and so many other residents, can the Ministry conduct a public consultation and set up a citizens’ workgroup to study the issue of second-hand smoke in homes?
Watch the speech here.