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Education still key to keeping nation clean

While some suggestions at a recent public forum on keeping Singapore clean are worth considering, others are not practical ("Have 'no-cleaners week' so people can get hands dirty?"; last Sunday).

It is easier said than done to do away with cleaners for a week so that residents can clean up the surroundings outside their homes. Many Singaporeans do not even help clean their own homes as they rely on their maids to keep everything spick and span.

The sad reality is that residents pay monthly service and conservancy fees for the upkeep of the neighbourhood, hence they are unlikely to clean up areas outside their homes.

The FairPrice supermarket chain has made headway in limiting the use of plastic bags. Its Bring Your Own Bag scheme saved the supermarket chain more than nine million plastic bags in 2014.

That said, education is still a powerful tool to help in our endeavour to achieve "a cleaner, greener and smarter home". The Education Ministry should work closely with the Environment and Water Resources Ministry to spearhead more initiatives that focus on environmental issues in the education system.

Most of all, schools must remind the young that every individual should take ownership of the environment now to ensure a greener, cleaner future.

Jeffrey Law Lee Beng

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on January 17, 2016, with the headline 'Education still key to keeping nation clean'. Print Edition | Subscribe