At the launch of Koufu's initiative to go plastic straw-free at its Singapore Management University foodcourt in March, people had gathered to break the Singapore record for most number of people drinking from bamboo straws.
A photograph from the event has stuck with me. While the focus was obviously the record-breaking feat, my eyes were drawn to the hundreds of single-use paper cups that were used for the challenge.
It isstrange that an event to raise awareness about minimising plastic straw waste ended up generating a pile of paper trash. Such missteps send mixed signals to the public.
Maybe it was an oversight by the organisers who wanted to hold the activity in the most convenient way possible, but this is not the first time I have noticed such slip-ups.
I have seen environmental campaigns using posters made from plastic, and "green" goods that come wrapped in excessive plastic packaging. Such contradictions weaken the environmentalists' message, and unintentionally undermine the good work being done.
Environmentalists should review the sustainability of their marketing collateral and events so that they do not appear misaligned with their core vision.
Ang Zyn Yee (Ms)