Public Hygiene Council

Keeping Singapore Clean


Caring for our environment

Mar 31, 2022

Our environmental consciousness tends to heighten in the month of March due to the successful Earth Hour campaign run by the World Wildlife Fund (WWF).


The symbolic gesture of switching lights off to show solidarity in support of the environment has grown into a world movement. People start being conscious about their daily habits, like using less disposables, recycling, and conserving energy.


One issue that may not occur to us as an environmental concern is littering. Many of us do not associate littering as an environmental problem. However, the impact of littering on the environment comes in many folds. 


Littering not only degrades the environment, it also causes damage to our waterways, seas and marine life. Litter are often blown or washed down our monsoon drains. They often clog up our drains and cause floods during the rainy season.


Those that do not clog up the drains will end in our reservoirs or the sea, polluting the source of our drinking water and endanger our marine life. It is common knowledge that marine life like turtles or dolphins may sometimes mistake the litter as food and could choke on them or get entangled in it.


Hazardous chemicals could leak out of litter and pollute the soil and water nearby. These toxins may eventually enter our bodies through the food chain. The contaminants could also inhibit plant growth and cause serious health issues to the animals that eat them.


Littering is costly to our environment. It is time that we recognise that the seemingly harmless act of leaving our trash behind has serious consequences. It could harm us and the environment around us.


To avoid all these problems, all we need to do is to pick up after ourselves and keep our commons spaces clean. The simple act of sorting out the recyclables from the disposables and binning them right could just make our environment a little better and more liveable.

Photo by John Cameron on Unsplash