A Greener and More Sustainable Singapore
Mr Chairman, I beg to move, “That the total sum to be allocated for Head L of the Estimates be reduced by $100”.
Sir, during the debate on the Carbon Pricing amendment Bill, I did not raise my hand but Mr Speaker thought he saw my hand raised and called me for my clarification. I do hope he does this more often and calls my name; my correct name more often as well. But for that occasion, I really did not raise my hand and I replied to him that for once, I have no questions.
And that is the truth. I had no questions, as I sincerely believe that we are heading in the right direction in terms of our climate policies. There is no doubt there is still work to be done, but we have done so much in the past few years to not just adapt to climate change but most importantly mitigate climate change. We are significantly cutting our emissions and getting everyone on board on this important journey to save our planet.
We have also done a phenomenal job in our #SayYesToWasteLess campaign and for all of us to go zero waste. The Extended Producer Responsibility, the upcoming disposable carrier bag charge, the Deposit Refund Scheme are all steps in the right direction and positively respond to the calls by so many activists who have called for these for many years.
We are also taking active steps to solve problems we all face on the ground. We will be more effective in tackling high rise litter with the recent amendments to the Environmental Public Health Act and Project Wolbachia is proving a vital tool in our efforts to combat dengue.
We are also uplifting our lower income workers with the Progressive Wage Model (PWM) for workers in our cleaning and waste management sectors. We are also doing well in advancing food resilience and security, ensuring water sustainability and transforming and uplifting the hawker industry.
Now that we done so much and done so well in all the above aspects, we now have some breathing space and some time to devote to tackling secondhand smoke. Our residents need their breathing space and need us to change our policies so they can protect themselves and their loved ones from the dangers of secondhand smoke.
Like climate change, you cannot just adapt to secondhand smoke. Like complaints about high-rise littering, complaints about secondhand smoke is rising, it is doubled. And like high-rise littering, we need to amend our policies and even our laws to tackle secondhand smoke. Like Project Wolbachia, we can be creative and come up with ways to detect, deter and wipe out secondhand smoke.
I know Senior Minister of State Amy is equally concerned about secondhand smoke and I know that we can move forward on this issue like so many other issues I have debated her in this House over the years. There are lots more issues to cover. I know my Government Parliamentary Committee (GPC) colleagues, fellow Members of Parliament and I will be asking lots more questions and I look forward to a robust debate.
Watch the speech here.