Deputy Prime Minister (DPM) Heng Swee Keat launched the 30th anniversary of the annual CGS campaign at ITE College East last November 30. Organised by the National Environment Agency (NEA), this year’s CGS event takes on a hybrid approach, with a small, limited-attendance physical launch event, livestreamed on Facebook, and virtual exhibits and online workshops for the public to participate in. The launch event comprised the traditional CGS tree-planting ceremony with DPM Heng, presentation of the CGS Awards and Community in Bloom Ambassador Awards, and a live Q&A session with Minister for Sustainability and the Environment, Ms Grace Fu, Senior Minister of State, Dr Amy Khor, and Minister of State, Mr Desmond Tan. DPM Heng also spoke at the launch event, emphasising the importance of clean and green efforts in keeping public health threats at bay, and ensuring a more sustainable future for all Singaporeans. In line with CGS’ aims to inspire Singaporeans to care for and protect the environment by adopting a clean, green and sustainable lifestyle, and to combat climate change, NEA and National Water Agency, PUB, launched the Climate-Friendly Households (CFH) Programme, to encourage households to reduce energy and water consumption, while saving money in the long run.
CGS 2020 online, simultaneously launched at www.cgs.gov.sg/cgs2020, continues the theme of ‘Caring for our Environment Together’. The plethora of online activities allows the public to actively participate in CGS this year, despite the absence of a physical carnival. A series of video workshops will be released on the CGS website over the 28 and 29 November weekend, hosted by local personalities Nurul Aini, Mark Lee and Eswari Gunasagar. Those following the workshops at home will be encouraged to post photos of their completed workshop products on social media with the hashtag #cleanandgreensingapore, with prizes up for grabs.
CGS 2020’s other online programmes and exhibits cover a broad range of topics from dengue prevention, littering, climate change, to the 3Rs (Reduce, Reuse, Recycle) and Zero Waste.
ITE College East is NEA’s partner for the physical launch of CGS 2020. The campus features open stairways and circulation spaces to minimise energy consumption. The college has recently set up a 10-station Eco Trail which aims to spread environmental awareness amongst its students and visitors, which is in line with CGS’ theme. The Eco Trail features the college’s efforts in going green, practising the 3Rs and biodiversity conservation.
Climate-Friendly Households (CFH) Programme
In line with the aim of CGS to foster a climate-friendly mindset among households, in March 2020, the then-Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources announced the CFH Package to support one-, two- and three-room HDB households in their purchases of energy- or water-efficient essential appliances with three types of e-vouchers, amounting to $225. Each eligible household will receive a $150 e-voucher to purchase an energy-efficient and climate-friendly refrigerator, a $50 e-voucher to offset the cost of changing their shower fittings to more water-efficient three-tick models, and a $25 e-voucher to purchase LED lights.
This is now being rolled out as the CFH Programme which encourages households to be energy and water-efficient, thereby saving money in the long run. Besides efficiency and cost savings, the CFH Programme also encourages the purchase of climate-friendly appliances as only energy-efficient refrigerators that use a low GWP refrigerant are eligible for redemption under the programme.
In Singapore, refrigerators are one of the most energy-intensive household appliances, accounting for about 17 per cent of the total electricity consumption in households. If each of the more than 300,000 eligible one-, two- and three-room HDB household switched to a more energy efficient refrigerator, the potential combined electricity cost savings of these households would be about $160 million over the typical lifespan of the refrigerator. The associated carbon abatement would be equivalent to 357 million kg CO2 of carbon emissions, or the annual carbon emissions from 110,000 cars.
In terms of water consumption, showers make up the largest component of water usage, almost 30 per cent of the total household water consumption. If each eligible one-, two- and three-room HDB household switched just one shower fitting to a more water efficient 3-tick model, they could collectively save up to 1.1 million gallons of water per day.
Of the more than 300,000 one-, two- and three-room HDB households, 64 per cent do not use LED lights. If all households made the switch, they could collectively save up to $3.7 million in annual energy costs. This would be equivalent to saving enough energy to power about 5,000 three-room HDB flats.
Accessing the e-vouchers
From today, eligible households will be able to apply for their e-vouchers at www.go.gov.sg/cfhp. Each eligible household can also expect to receive a physical mailer in their residential mailbox containing instructions on how to redeem the e-vouchers. Eligible households can then present the e-vouchers at participating merchants’ outlets for redemption before 31 December 2023.
Seniors or households who do not own a smart phone can seek assistance through IMDA’s Mobile Access for Seniors here. For residents who need help with digital literacy skills, they may wish to approach IMDA’s SG Digital Offices by calling 6377 3800 or visiting this link.
To make Singapore greener, we are also working with the community to further integrate nature as Singapore transforms into a City in Nature. As Singapore develops, this ensures that our city continues to be highly liveable while mitigating environmental challenges such as climate change.
The tree planting tradition was started by our founding Prime Minister, Mr Lee Kuan Yew in 1963, and continues to play an important role as we restore nature into our city. We are stepping up efforts through the One Million Trees movement by planting more than a million trees across Singapore over the next 10 years with the community’s support.
To launch CGS this year and in support of the One Million Trees movement, DPM Heng planted three Magnolia champaca trees at the ITE College East campus, together with Minister for National Development, Mr Desmond Lee, Minister for Sustainability and the Environment, Ms Grace Fu, and Mayor of North East District, Mr Desmond Choo. Magnolia champaca trees are known for their flowers which emit a natural therapeutic fragrance and are typically used in perfumery and essential oils. They were joined by ITE College East students and Senior Minister of State for Sustainability and the Environment, Dr Amy Khor, Minister of State for Sustainability and the Environment, Desmond Tan, Mayor Low Yen Ling and Mayor Alex Yam.
There will be 18 trees of five tree species planted across the ITE College East campus, namely the Magnolia champaca, Magnolia x alba, Gardenia carinta, Gardenia tubifera and Cananga odorata. These trees are known for their fragrant flowers and are planted to create a therapeutic and relaxing environment within the campus.
A total of 184 awards would be presented as part of CGS 2020. During the launch event today, Mr Heng presented 16 national awards to recognise grassroots organisations, for their efforts in achieving exemplary standards in the areas of public hygiene and cleanliness, resource conservation and energy efficiency. District-level and Best Cleaners awards will be presented at district environmental events scheduled in 2021. The latter includes 158 awards presented to cleaners who have demonstrated pride and commitment in their work. This year’s number is the highest to be awarded since the CGS Awards started in 2003, and underscores the important contribution of our cleaners, as frontline workers in the nation’s fight against COVID-19.
Community in Bloom Ambassadors
Eight new Community in Bloom (CIB) Ambassadors were also appointed during this year’s CGS event. The CIB Ambassador Award recognises individuals who are able to establish new areas for growth in gardening and facilitate greater community involvement with their gardening and networking skills. Launched in 2005, CIB is a programme by the National Parks Board (NParks) that aims to nurture a gardening culture among Singaporeans by encouraging and facilitating community gardening efforts. Through gardening, individuals can come together to build community bonds and strengthen social resilience in our City in Nature. There are currently more than 1,600 community gardens under the CIB programme across the island and 78 CIB ambassadors.
In conjunction with this year’s CGS launch on 28 November 2020, members of the public can join a series of free physical walks and virtual activities that are designed to enrich knowledge on the various flora and fauna in Singapore and pique interest in nature.
 Assuming annual savings of about $50 over a 10-year lifespan of a refrigerator when households change to a three-tick model from a one-tick model, and an Electricity Tariff domestic rate of 22.93 cts/kWh (rate for 1 Oct – 31 Dec 2020).
 Assumes an Electricity Tariff domestic rate of 22.93 cts/kWh (rate for 1 Oct – 31 Dec 2020)
 Assumes households are switching from CFL to LED.