Debate on ministries’ budgets: Environment and Water Resources

Environment Snippets: Pretty in purple

Senior Minister of State for the Environment and Water Resources Amy Khor (above).
Senior Minister of State for the Environment and Water Resources Amy Khor (above).PHOTO: MINISTRY OF THE ENVIRONMENT AND WATER RESOURCES

Pretty in purple

Showing she was walking the talk to minimise waste, Senior Minister of State for the Environment and Water Resources Amy Khor (above) turned up in Parliament in an "upcycled" dress. A combination of two second-hand dresses, the purple outfit with a floral panel was created by The Fashion Pulpit, which promotes sustainable fashion.

Dr Khor has also been meeting many aspiring young hawkers, and had some treats for her colleagues in Parliament yesterday. She arranged for cheng tng from XX Dessert and min jiang kueh (pancakes) from Munchi Delights - with fillings of Thai milk tea and Belgian chocolate in addition to the classic peanut filling - to be served at the Members Room during the tea break, which she said "literally flew off the trays".

Both stalls are at Yishun Park Hawker Centre, and XX Dessert is run by its youngest hawker. Mr Peh Zixuan, 23, started out under Timbre's incubation stall programme after completing NS.


No drugs in our water

Drugs disposed of in sinks or toilets are substantially removed through the water reclamation process. In fact, Newater technology is so reliable that the reverse osmosis process effectively removes any remaining pharmaceutical compounds when treated used water is channelled into Newater production, said Minister for the Environment and Water Resources Masagos Zulkifli.

He was responding to Nominated MP Irene Quay's concerns about PUB's treatment capabilities in removing drugs from used water. "PUB's constant monitoring showed that pharmaceutical compounds were not detected in our drinking water," he said.


Columbarium plaques

The contractor who provided quartz instead of marble plaques at niches in the Mount Vernon Columbarium Complex will replace some 8,600 plaques and bear all additional costs incurred.

Replying to Non-Constituency MP Dennis Tan's question on whether action has been taken against errant contractors who provided quartz instead of marble, Senior Minister of State for the Environment and Water Resources Amy Khor said there was no evidence to suggest SLS 518, the company contracted to provide the plaques, had deliberately provided a different material with the intention to cheat.

She added the National Environment Agency (NEA) has found that the marble and quartz plaques are comparable in price. "NEA will continue to monitor the replacement works closely. So far, there have been no anomalies detected during laboratory tests and visual inspections."

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