Debate on ministries’ budgets: Environment and Water Resources

From The Backbench: Reduce medication waste

NOMINATED MP IRENE QUAY
NOMINATED MP IRENE QUAY
MR LOUIS NG (Nee Soon GRC)
MR LOUIS NG (Nee Soon GRC)
MR GAN THIAM POH (Ang Mo Kio GRC)
MR GAN THIAM POH (Ang Mo Kio GRC)
MR AMRIN AMIN (Sembawang GRC)
MR AMRIN AMIN (Sembawang GRC)

NOMINATED MP IRENE QUAY

Reduce medication waste

Over-prescription and duplication are significant sources of medication waste, and solving these problems will lead to significant cost savings, said Ms Quay.

If not disposed of properly, these medications could pose significant environmental risks or be appropriated for illicit use, she added.

She urged the Government to fund services like medication reviews and "take back" campaigns for patients to return drugs so that they can be safely disposed of.


MR LOUIS NG (Nee Soon GRC)

Extend ban on dine-in disposables

At new hawker centres, the amount of waste generated has dropped significantly because hawkers cannot use disposable items for dine-in customers.

Mr Ng suggested extending this ban to all hawker centres, adding: "I do understand that disposables are used as it is more convenient and may be cheaper."

He suggested having incentives or subsidies to encourage hawkers to make the switch.


MR GAN THIAM POH (Ang Mo Kio GRC)

Help hawker culture flourish

More needs to be done to ensure a decent livelihood for hawkers while keeping hawker food affordable for Singaporeans, Mr Gan said.

He added that young people passionate about making food can earn better salaries in better environments, which is part of the reason they are turning away from the hawker trade.

He asked if there is any place that struggling hawkers can turn to for feedback and suggestions on how to turn their businesses around.


MR AMRIN AMIN (Sembawang GRC)

Initiatives to reduce water wastage

With climate change and increasing water demand, a study has found that Singapore is the country most likely to face water stress in 2040, Mr Amrin said.

A separate study has found that a significant number of people are less concerned about the sustainability of Singapore's water supply and that others felt they did not have the means to successfully conserve water.

He asked if the Government will introduce initiatives to help cut household water demand and increase water efficiency in businesses.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 08, 2019, with the headline 'From The Backbench'. Print Edition | Subscribe