High time for a Green New Deal for Singapore

(Eco Business, 28 Aug 2019) For a rich country, Singapore is not doing nearly enough to tackle climate change, and has chosen to spend billions on adaptation rather than prevention. Here’s what the city-state could and should do to rise to the climate crisis, writes Assaad Razzouk.

Singapore’s Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong recently explained in the country’s National Day Rally speech how the country will fight climate change, which he agreed was “one of the gravest challenges facing humankind”. 

The Prime Minister acknowledged that the Southeast Asian country is already feeling the impact of global warming through hotter weather (Singapore is warming twice as fast as the rest of the world – at 0.25 degrees Celsius per decade – according to Meteorological Service Singapore), heavier rainstorms and rising sea levels and suggested that Singapore needed at least S$100 billion (US$72 billion) to build its defences against nature’s wrath.

The Prime Minister’s policy speech of the year starkly highlights the asymmetrical impacts of climate change: Rich countries and rich people can throw money at it, poor countries and the poor pay the price. But rich countries can and should and need to do much more, and Singapore is no exception.

Here are measures the city-state should embrace, as a matter of urgency, if it is to contribute to the fight against climate change rather than simply be on the front-lines of suffering from its impact.

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Eco Business, 28 Aug 2019: High time for a Green New Deal for Singapore