Singapore

MPs share suggestions on reducing waste

Efforts to reduce waste in the three big culprit areas - food, packaging and electronics (e-waste) - will be bolstered with the passing of the Resource Sustainability Bill in Parliament yesterday.

In all, 16 MPs spoke during the four-hour debate on the Bill, which they support, even as they offered suggestions on how Singapore could do better.

Several MPs asked how the regulations will account for online retailers, especially those that ship their products from overseas.

In response, Senior Minister of State for the Environment and Water Resources Amy Khor said all Singapore-registered producers will be covered even if they sell their goods online.

Non-Constituency MP Daniel Goh said Singapore's social norm of prioritising convenience is undermining efforts to encourage recycling.

He suggested Singaporeans could be "nudged" to think more of the cost of convenience by, for example, mandating that households purchase and use government-certified bags for rubbish disposal.

Similarly, Nominated MP Walter Theseira said a "throwaway culture" exists because it is cheap. He suggested that one possible solution could be to impose a prepaid disposal fee on new electronic products at the point of sale.

Mr Louis Ng (Nee Soon GRC) wanted more measures to tackle unnecessary plastic waste generated by supermarkets. He suggested supermarkets here can consider having "nude zones"like some of their counterparts overseas.

"I would love to one day walk into our supermarkets in Singapore and see 'nude' vegetables and fruits without any plastic packaging," he said.

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Environment