Environmental issues in Singapore

Environmental issues in Singapore include air and water pollution, urbanisation and deforestation. The government established the Singapore Green Plan in 1992 to help with environmental problems.

Environmental policy

To combat the country's environmental problems the Singaporean government first made the Singapore Green Plan in 1992 and a new edition of it in 2012 to continue it.[1] The plan aims to keep tabs on the unstable populations of fauna and flora, to place new nature parks and to connect existing parks.[2] It was announced on June 3, 2013, that the government will begin recording the amount of carbon emitted in the country and how much of it is absorbed by the country's flora.[3]


Air pollution in Singapore

Further information: 1997 Southeast Asian haze
A housing estate in Jurong East being shrouded in haze, photographed October 15, 2006

In 1984, there were health concerns with the great number of pig farms in Singapore. They were deemed to have contributed to the pollution of the country, namely to the air. This problem was solved by reducing the number of such farms.[4] 65.8 metric tons (64.8 long tons; 72.5 short tons) of carbon dioxide were emitted in the country in 1996, ranking among one of the highest emission levels in the world. Air polluters in Singapore are mostly, but not only, vehicles for transport, despite the country's tough regulations.[5] The country is blanketed in haze for a period of time annually, contributed by smoke from Indonesian fires.[6]

Water pollution

Bottles of NEWater on display at a 2005 function

Water in Singapore is polluted by unwanted materials contributed by industrial facilities, coupled by oil from both incoming and outgoing trading vessels.[7] Corrective measures are taken, and affected water is taken for treatment at specialised centres.[5] Plants such as NEWater treat unwanted water into drinkable water.[8] One major water body in Singapore which used to be polluted is the Singapore River.[9][10]


Singapore's rapid development into an urban nation has neglected the natural environment, according to a report published by the National University of Singapore, which ranked the country as the "worst environmental offender among 179 countries". The report was "slammed" by the Singaporean government.[11]


From around 1980 to 2010, Singapore lost approximately 90 percent of its natural forests as a result of urbanisation.[11]

Interactive Graphics


  1. "About SGP 2012". Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources. Retrieved June 3, 2013.
  2. "National Initiatives". National Biodiversity Reference Center. Retrieved June 3, 2013.
  3. Zengkun, Feng (June 3, 2013). "Government to track Singapore's carbon emissions". The Straits Times.
  4. "Singapore - Agriculture". Country Studies. Retrieved June 2, 2013.
  5. 1 2 "Environmental Issues in Singapore". Allo' Expat Singapore. June 2, 2013.
  6. Harper, Damian (2007). "Malaysia, Singapore & Brunei. Ediz. Inglese" (10 ed.). Lonely Planet. pp. 69–. ISBN 9781740597081.
  7. Loke, Ming Chou (1988). The Coastal Environmental Profile of Singapore. The WorldFish Center. pp. 78–. ISBN 9789711022488.
  8. "NEWater". Public Utilities Board. Retrieved June 3, 2013.
  9. "Environmental Trailblazing in Singapore" (PDF). Centre for Liveable Cities. May 29, 2012. Retrieved June 3, 2013.
  10. "The History of Singapore River". Singapore River One. Retrieved June 3, 2013.
  11. 1 2 Vaughan, Victoria (May 14, 2010). "Is Singapore the worst environmental offender?". AsiaOne.
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