28 April 2009

An email that I sent recently....

To:mnd_hq@mnd.gov.sg; mewr_feedback@mewr.gov.sg; gracefu@mnd.gov.sg; jessie_liang@mnd.gov.sg; may_lim@mewr.gov.sg; amy_khor@mewr.gov.sg; maliki_osman@mnd.gov.sg

Monday, 27 April 2009 4:30:16

Dear MND and MEWR,

As a concerned Singaporean, I am alarmed to read the following in a speech by Minister Mah Bow Tan:
Cities have to ensure that economic growth is not stunted by infrastructure bottlenecks and that growth does not come at the expense of clean air, clean water and a liveable environment. http://www.mnd.gov.sg/newsroom/Speeches/speeches_2009_M_24042009.htm
I urge the Minister to reconsider that statement because research done by the authors of the "Limits to Growth", ecological economists and scientists have proven that "there is a fundamental conflict between economic growth and environmental protection, including conservation of biodiversity, clean air and water, and atmospheric stability. This conflict is due to natural laws (thermodynamics and ecological structures) - it is simply a result of the way the world works. Mounting evidence of this conflict demonstrates the limits to growth."

A cursory reading of the daily news reports will tell us that we are loosing biodiversity, fresh water, top soil, and clean air at an unprecedented rate and all of this is due to human economic expansion.

I plead with you to read the following articles and re-examine the growth paradigm which has guided us for at least the last 50 years and come to an understanding that this cannot go on forever. At some point, probably now, we will clash with the earth's ecological limits to sustain itself and Nature always wins. This means that societal collapse and die-offs are inevitable unless we take steps now to descend the growth ladder in a controlled manner, or else massive social dislocation is likely to ensue in the years ahead.

A sustainable Singapore requires a new non-growth paradigm to guide us, not the current one that has left the earth devastated and poorer for future generations.

Revisiting the Limits to Growth After Peak Oil

Economics in a Full World

Prosperity Without Growth

Why our Economy is Killing the Planet