Excerpts from readers' letters

GARDENING A FORM OF THERAPY

The National Parks Board (NParks) should be commended for continuing the "allotment gardens scheme" after its pilot last year.

Gardening enthusiasts are able to reap not only the crops, but also the vast benefits of active gardening, such as decreasing stress levels and mental fatigue, and family bonding when members are involved in the activity together.

It is also a good pastime for the elderly. Studies have found that gardening is one of the physical activities that can reduce the risk of Alzheimer's by 50 per cent.

Gardening can indeed be a form of therapy for the body and soul.

Jasper Koh


'WASTAGE' AT CLEAN AND GREEN EVENT

I happen to live near the location in Boon Keng where the annual Clean and Green Singapore carnival was launched last week. (Take ownership to make S'pore cleaner: Tharman; Nov 5).

The building used for this event was massive.

Erection of the structure started about a month earlier and I was sure it was going to be there for at least six months.

I was shocked to find out that it was for a two-day event.

This was wasteful. It was made worse, given that it was for a Clean and Green Singapore event.

Had the organisers been really green, they could have held the event at a void deck where there was minimum need for such a structure. Also, shouldn't the organisers be more prudent about the usage of funds?

Tan Kian Kai


RETHINK NEED FOR PAPER RECEIPTS

The use of paper is a significant contributor to the amount of waste generated in Singapore. Paper consistently comes in third after construction debris and metals; and paper and cardboard have a low recycling rate, compared with metals.

Paper waste from receipts deserves particular attention as receipts are issued for almost every retail transaction. Often, even for a single purchase worth less than a dollar at a supermarket, I receive a paper "scroll" about the length of my forearm containing information about the store, the purchase, and so on.

Today, technology offers us many viable alternatives. Among them: having an SMS or QR code for a transaction sent to the customer's mobile phone. It is more convenient to retain this, compared with a physical slip of paper.

At the very least, the printing of receipts could be made optional.

Teo Zhi Ren Raphael


PRESIDENT'S 'REFRESHING' TOAST

It is heartening to see President Halimah Yacob toasting German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier at the Istana with a glass of orange juice (Germany and Singapore 'have forged tight bond'; Nov 3).

The clear stance taken by Singapore's highest office-holder not to drink anything that can intoxicate is indeed refreshing.

Cheers to the President!

Lim Boon Seng


WAYS TO IMPROVE CYCLISTS' SAFETY

With the increasing number of cyclists on our roads, it is time to be more proactive in this area.

I propose that the authorities take a serious look into the use of protective helmets for all cyclists on our roads.

It should be made mandatory for all cyclists to undergo a basic course on road safety.

They should also take the Highway Code test.

These will go a long way in reducing the number of accidents involving cyclists on our roads.

Dr Gordon Tan Wee Teck

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 10, 2017, with the headline 'Excerpts from readers' letters'. Print Edition | Subscribe