Documentary on Singapore’s coastal protection efforts airs; public engagements on future of coastline launches

A Forward Singapore dialogue on how Singapore can protect its coastline along City-East Coast from the threat of rising seas was held on Saturday.

Nigel Chin

Started writing for the passion. Now writing because it’s the only thing I can do.

Published: 16 October 2022, 12:13 AM

A documentary as part of PUB’s efforts to increase public awareness on coast protection aired on Friday (Oct 14). 

Titled Stem The Tide, the documentary sees various experts and government agencies sharing insights on the threat posed by sea level rise to Singapore and what Singaporeans can collectively do to tackle this challenge. 

The documentary, which is produced by CNA and commissioned by PUB, also goes behind the scenes to show how Singapore harnesses technology and innovation to fight against sea level rise. It also looks at overseas case studies, particularly those featuring designs of multipurpose coastal protection measures, to give a glimpse of what Singapore can achieve in the future. 

It will be aired on Channel 5, Channel 8, Suria and Vasantham. The 45-minute documentary is also hosted on PUB’s YouTube Channel and CNA’s website

Separately, PUB also started its series of community engagement sessions on Saturday with the Our Coastal Conversation dialogue sessions. 

Part of the Forward Singapore under the Steward pillar, the first dialogue saw 80 participants joining Minister for Sustainability and the Environment Grace Fu and Speaker of Parliament Tan Chuan Jin. 

The National Water Agency shared in a press release that it seeks to “engage widely with the community and diverse interest groups to forge a better understanding of the considerations and trade-offs when tackling the challenge of more intense rainfall which could cause frequent inland flooding, sea level rise that could inundate coastal and low-lying areas, as well as developing the range of possible solutions that can be considered for coastal protection. 

In her opening remarks at the dialogue, Ms Fu said that Singaporeans have a collective responsibility to ensure that Singapore can continue to survive and thrive for decades to come. 

“Climate action requires change. It involves trade-offs… Can we, as individuals, reduce our personal carbon footprint? Can we use less of Earth’s resources, recycle more and generate less waste to protect our common environment? Would we pay more for energy, water and food security so that we are able to withstand future supply shocks better?

“These are just some of the questions that we must ask ourselves, to chart our new way forward together and ensure a liveable and climate-resilient future for Singapore. We are all stewards of our environment and our planet,” said Ms Fu. 

PUB said in its release that many participants “shared a common desire to protect our cherished coastal areas and enhance our community spaces with innovative design and solutions”. 

“We are encouraged by the strong interest and response from the community for our first dialogue session, and the richness of today’s discussion. There was a good mix of participants and insightful perspectives…  We will continue with these conversations through various formats to seek ideas and inputs as we develop the site-specific plans,” said PUB chief executive Goh Si Hou. 

Currently, PUB is carrying out studies on the City-East Coast area, covering Changi, East-Coast Marina and part of the Greater Southern Waterfront district, which spans 57km. This region was identified to be more vulnerable and critical to the threat of rising sea levels, and the study is expected to complete in 2025. 

“Based on current projections, mean sea levels in Singapore are expected to rise by up to 1 metre by 2100 due to climate change. As a low-lying city surrounded by the sea, with about 30 per cent of the island less than 5m above sea level, Singapore is particularly vulnerable to the effects of sea level rise,” said PUB. 

“Given Singapore’s densely built-up environment, it is important to consider the twin impact of sea level rise and more intense rainfall due to climate change in our flood resilience strategy.” 

A second session of the Our Coastal Conversation dialogue will be held on Oct 28. It will be hosted by Senior Minister of State for Sustainability and the Environment Dr Koh Poh Koon and Senior Minister of State for National Development Tan Kiat How. 

For more content about Forward SG and how youths can participate, click here

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