The first “Our SG Conversation for the Green Community” was held in Jan 2013, and was initiated by Faizah Jamal, Nominated Member of Parliament (Environment and Heritage) People and Civic Sector, and Eugene Tay, Director of Green Future Solutions. The diverse views of the green community, which included environmental NGOs and groups; individual environment, animal and wildlife activists; and environmental businesses, associations and research academics, added an important voice to the overall national “Our SG Conversation”.
After the conversation, there was feedback that the conversation format was useful in seeking and discussing views and issues, and that there should be more conversations focusing on specific environmental issues and to open them to the public. Subsequently, another “Our Singapore Conversation on Green Spaces” was organised by Nature Society (Singapore) and Young NTUC in Nov 2013 to focus on green spaces and their importance and conservation.
In 2014, Green Future Solutions would like to organise more conversations on specific topics for a sustainable Singapore, as a follow-up to the first conversation for the green community. In addition, the inputs from these Conversations on Sustainable Singapore could be added to the review of the Sustainable Singapore Blueprint, which is being conducted this year.
The Conversations on Sustainable Singapore would be held over 3 sessions this year. The tentative topics and dates are:
1) Energy and Climate Change: Energy efficiency, clean energy and climate change (29 Mar 2014)
2) Waste and the 3Rs: Waste management, reduction, reuse and recycling (28 Jun 2014)
3) Food Security: Food supply and food waste (27 Sep 2014)
For each session, there would be 50 seats opened to the public. The 50 participants would be divided into 5 small groups of 10 people each, and each group would have a facilitator and a scribe.
The small group discussions would first focus on these questions:
- What are your personal thoughts and stories on this topic?
- What are the positive or negative things that you see on this topic?
After a break, the small groups would focus on the next set of questions:
- How can Singapore do better on this topic?
- How can the public, private and people sectors work together on this topic?
Next, the small groups would come together to form a big group, and each small group representative would share their discussions. This is followed by a big group discussion on what has been said and what can be done.
The programme for each session is as follows:
0900 Welcome and Introduction
0915 Small Group Discussions (What)
1030 Small Group Discussions (How)
1115 Small Group Presentations to Big Group
1145 Big Group Discussion
1215 Closing Remarks
After the conversations, the discussions would be compiled into a report and sent to the relevant government agencies for their reference and action, and also as consultation material for the Sustainable Singapore Blueprint review.
The estimated costs for organising the 3 conversation sessions are:
1) Venue and equipment (projector, 70 seats, flipchart stands, tables, power sockets, etc) – Venue Sponsor
2) Writing materials and stationery – $200
3) Food for break – $1,800
4) Manpower (1 moderator, 5 facilitators, 5 scribes, helpers, photographer, report writers, etc) – Volunteers