Singapore Is Going 100% Green, Like Vegetation Green
Singapore is one of the most densely populated places in the world. It is a island-city-state with roughly 6 million people, all cramped in around 700 square kilometres or 277 square miles. This means that there are roughly 8,000 people per sq. kilometre or about 20,000 people per sq. mile. These figures put Singapore as the third most densely compact places in the world. By comparison, the United States is located on the 182nd place by population density, with just 33 people per sq. km.
In any case, another estimate points to the fact that these human-dense places, like Singapore, account for nearly 70 percent of all greenhouse gas emissions, even though they make up just 2 percent of the planet’s surface. But while this might ring some bells and worry some environmentalists, it, nevertheless, brings up the opportunity of having the environmentally problematic areas cramped in a relatively small place. And this is something that Singapore is willing to do – to clean up its act, so to speak. And to be fair, it has been planning and implementing it since 2008.
This green initiative on Singapore’s part comes in large part to Cheong Koon Hean, the city’s first female head of the Urban Development Agency. She is a veteran architect, as well as the CEO of the Housing and Development Board, an organisation that manages public housing for the Singaporean population.
Her plan for Singapore is simple yet brilliant. She proposes a 100 percent greenery replacement where any plant life that is destroyed during a city development project must be replanted or integrated into the structure, in one way or another, either on high-rise gardens or terraces.
In Hean’s eyes, going green and returning nature to its original state is not an option or a momentary trend, but rather, a necessity of the utmost importance. Given the limited amount of space Singapore has when it comes to its urban expansion, they simply can’t afford to lose all greenery in favour of new buildings. She also proposes, that given the city’s high density, varying hues of blue and green should be used around Singapore so as to give it the illusion of space for its citizens and visitors.
Hean is aiming at achieving this goal by 2030 and hopes that other densely-packed cities follow in this example set by Singapore. There are countless other methods through which skyscrapers and other buildings can reduce their carbon footprint, not to mention the many other technologies that appear almost every other day.