Plant a coral at Sisters' Island Marine Park for $200

(Foreground from left) NParks CEO Kenneth Er, SMS for National Development Desmond Lee and HSBC CEO Guy Harvey-Samuel preparing coral nubbins for transplanting at the Marine Park Outreach and Education Centre on St John's Island.
(Foreground from left) NParks CEO Kenneth Er, SMS for National Development Desmond Lee and HSBC CEO Guy Harvey-Samuel preparing coral nubbins for transplanting at the Marine Park Outreach and Education Centre on St John's Island. ST PHOTO: DANSON CHEONG

SINGAPORE - For $200, you could contribute to growing Singapore's marine biodiversity, under a new programme by the National Parks Board (NParks).

Launched on Saturday, the Plant-A-Coral initiative will allow individuals or organisations to sponsor a coral with a minimum donation of $200.

For every $200 donation, NParks will plant a coral nubbin, a small coral fragment, in its nursery on Sisters' Island, and grow it to suitable size before transplanting it onto a reef at the Sisters' Island Marine Park.

For larger donations of $20,000, NParks will put in place a Reef Enhancement Unit, an artificial structure or scaffolding to which corals attach and grow.

Donors will be provided with photo updates on the coral every six months and will be given the chance to go on an intertidal walk at the Sisters' Islands Marine Park.

In 2014, the Sisters' Islands Marine Park was designated Singapore's first marine park.

The latest programmes are part of continuing plans for the area.

The 40ha park, about the size of 50 football fields, comprises Sisters' Islands and surrounding reefs, as well as the western reefs of nearby St John's Island and Pulau Tekukor. Its ecosystem supports corals, anemones, seahorses, fish and other marine life.

 

On Saturday, NParks also unveiled broad plans for the two Sisters' Islands - including building the country's first turtle hatchery and other facilities such as forest trails and intertidal pools, where the public can learn about conservation efforts.

Most of these new facilities will be built by the end of 2018.

Announcing these plans on Saturday at the Marine Park Outreach and Education Centre on St John's Island, Senior Minister of State for National Development Desmond Lee said Singapore might be small but it punches above its weight in marine richness.

There are more than 250 species of hard coral here, a third of the world's total.

The Marine Park would protect and conserve this biodiversity.

"The Marine Park is meant for Singaporeans, and we hope our people will love it, grow it and take ownership of this park," said Mr Lee.


Note: This story has been updated for clarity.