Earth Hour festival to be a zero-waste event

At 8.30pm today, buildings, hotels and businesses island-wide will be turning off non-essential lights as a symbol of their pledge to save the environment.
At 8.30pm today, buildings, hotels and businesses island-wide will be turning off non-essential lights as a symbol of their pledge to save the environment.ST PHOTO: KELVIN CHNG
Mr Sameer Grover and his wife Lisa Teo, both 38, enjoying family time with their children Nathaniel, three, and Ethan, one, on recycled wooden pallets at the Earth Hour 2019 festival yesterday.
Mr Sameer Grover and his wife Lisa Teo, both 38, enjoying family time with their children Nathaniel, three, and Ethan, one, on recycled wooden pallets at the Earth Hour 2019 festival yesterday.ST PHOTO: KELVIN CHNG

This is in line with year-long campaign to raise awareness of waste issues

This year's Earth Hour festival is going zero-waste.

Those attending the three-day festival taking place at Marina Bay Sands Event Plaza are encouraged to bring their own reusable containers and cutlery.

Booths as well as workshop spaces have been built with recyclable materials such as wooden pallets.

A major attraction will be a maze highlighting the loss of biodiversity. It is fashioned from used textiles and recycled pipes that were repainted.

Vegetarian food such as plant-based meat substitutes will be sold during the festival.

Food waste will also be converted into fertiliser.

This first zero-waste event organised by World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) Singapore is in line with 2019 being declared Singapore's Year Towards Zero Waste, a year-long campaign to raise awareness of waste issues and the circular economy, which is the approach to transform waste into resources.

A WWF-Singapore spokesman said: "For decades, we have consumed more than what the planet can give and the result is that we have already lost 60 per cent of biodiversity.

"If conscious citizens make smarter choices and businesses provide better solutions, we can ultimately build communities in Singapore that will drive change for nature."

The festival started yesterday and will end tomorrow night.

In keeping with tradition, at 8.30pm today, landmarks such as the Singapore Flyer and the Esplanade will join other buildings, hotels and businesses island-wide in turning off non-essential lights, as a symbol of their pledge to save the environment.

On the grassroots front, a number of constituencies are also organising Earth Hour countdown events.

In Hong Kah North Community Club, participants will dine in the dark while observing the lights out while a terrarium-making class is being organised for residents by the Changi Simei Community Club.

At the National University of Singapore, students from the Environmental Studies programme will be hosting a stargazing session on campus tonight.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 30, 2019, with the headline 'Earth Hour festival to be a zero-waste event'. Print Edition | Subscribe