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SMRT bus stuck in the mud at Kim Keat Avenue


SINGAPORE: An SMRT bendy bus was stuck in an open up discipline in Kim Keat on Thursday morning (Sep 29), where it has been for at the very least nine hours.

A Channel NewsAsia reporter arrived at the scene at 8am and found the motor vehicle stranded in the mud close to Blocks 254 and 256 at Kim Keat Avenue. There had been no broken obstacles in sight and it was unclear how the bus came to be on the discipline.

In response to queries, SMRT mentioned it was operating to shift the bus off the discipline.

“The bus captain was returning the motor vehicle to the bus depot early this morning when he took a completely wrong convert and attempted to make a U-convert on the discipline,” mentioned Mr Patrick Nathan, SMRT’s Vice-President for Company Data and Communications.

“We apologise to citizens who may possibly have been impacted by the sound for the duration of the restoration effort and hard work,” he mentioned, adding that SMRT is investigating the incident.

An SMRT consultant at the scene told Channel NewsAsia that the bus driver had absent residence but mentioned he was not guaranteed if the driver was hurt.

Two tow trucks also arrived at the scene, and its drivers had been seen talking about how to shift the bus.

Mr Seah Hui Chou, an staff of People’s Automobile Recovery Provider – which has a deal with SMRT – mentioned this was the initial situation he has seen of a bus stuck on a discipline in his 19 a long time with the firm.

He mentioned his firm was alerted to the incident at close to 2am but did not endeavor to shift the bus very last night time. “We needed to wait right up until workplace hours to make guaranteed the SMRT head workplace could verify we would not be liable for destruction if we use rougher methods like pulling the bus,” he mentioned.

In accordance to Mr Seah, the towing organizations at first attempted to degree the bus by lifting it to floor degree, but the overall body of the bus was by now touching the floor so there was no way to insert the mechanical arm to raise the motor vehicle without damaging the bus.

A chain has been connected to the rear of the bus in an endeavor to pull it out, but this may possibly destruction the rear bus compartment, he mentioned, adding that SMRT engineers have provided them the green mild to do this.

Various citizens passing by gawked at the bus and took photos. A resident living nearby, Mr Terence Low, posted a photo of the stuck bus on Fb at close to twelve.24am on Thursday.

“Witching hour of midnight and bendy bus receives stuck in this article on this patch of green close to our block. Driver is making an attempt ever so difficult to shift it with engine heading on overdrive! Maybe developing additional air and sound pollution than heading anyplace rapid,” he wrote.

“There’re no bus depots in this area. LTA making an attempt out a new transportation route or SMRT lost a bus taken by a driver absent rogue? Moment of not guaranteed to snicker or cry.”

Mr Low added that he referred to as the neighbourhood police post and the Targeted visitors Law enforcement came to the scene, but left following that. 



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Hong Kong marks 2nd anniversary of &#039Umbrella Revolution&#039


HONG KONG: Hundreds of Hong Kong professional-democracy supporters keeping yellow umbrellas held 3 minutes’ silence exterior the city’s government places of work Wednesday (Sep 28) to mark the next anniversary of mass protests complicated Beijing.

The anniversary of the “Umbrella Revolution” will come as tensions remain large in the semi-autonomous metropolis, with fears increasing that China is tightening its grip.

Hong Kong professional-democracy supporters held 3 minutes’ silence to mark the ‘Umbrella Revolution’. (Image: Wei Du)

Huge rallies in 2014 demanding thoroughly no cost leadership elections and other democratic reforms for Hong Kong introduced pieces of the metropolis to a standstill for much more than two months.

Those people calls for were snubbed by Beijing, but considering that then previous Umbrella Movement protesters have won seats as metropolis lawmakers.

Some of them are now pushing for a total crack from China as the fledgling independence movement gains help.

Hong Kong marks the next anniversary of the ‘Umbrella Revolution’. (Image: Wei Du)

Former Umbrella Movement protest chief Nathan Regulation, 23, turned Hong Kong’s youngest legislator in the latest citywide elections. He now advocates self-resolve for Hong Kong and was because of to address crowds afterwards Wednesday.

At five:58 pm (0958 GMT) those people collected held 3 minutes’ silence to mark the time two decades ago when law enforcement fired tear gasoline at student-led professional-democracy protesters.

That galvanised tens of thousands to appear on to the streets in help.

The mainly peaceful demonstrations spawned sprawling protest camps, with tents and artworks established up on highways and shopping streets.

The movement obtained its title from protesters’ use of umbrellas to shield them from tear gasoline, pepper spray, sun and rain alike.

Hong Kong professional-democracy supporters mark the next anniversary of the ‘Umbrella Revolution’. (Image: Wei Du)

Supporters Wednesday mentioned they felt the rallies experienced adjusted the metropolis for the superior.

“The Umbrella Movement transformed quite a few in the metropolis to care about the local community, so we must make an energy to remember this incident,” mentioned school student Pleasure Chan, fourteen.

Chan mentioned she experienced taken section in the protests in 2014 – quite a few school-age protesters joined the demonstrations and makeshift school rooms were established up so they could keep on their research.

Housewife Claire Weber, forty two, mentioned she was at the internet site two decades ago when law enforcement fired tear gasoline at the crowds.

“No make any difference what, or how messy the political atmosphere receives, we must persist,” she advised AFP.

The environment Wednesday was carnivalesque, with souvenirs like miniature yellow paper umbrellas – the image of the movement – handed out to those people having section.

Metres-tall symptoms looking through “I want serious universal suffrage” were exhibited, an echo of the slogans of 2014.

Regulation mentioned the movement experienced led to much more political recognition for those people who experienced been included.

“It is extremely essential for them to retain reminding on their own why they came out … and retain the faith in the upcoming and stand for all the Hong Kong folks,” he advised AFP.

Hong Kong was handed back again to China by Britain in 1997 under a semi-autonomous “a person region, two systems” offer, which guaranteed its freedoms for fifty decades.

But there are deep issues those people liberties are under risk in a amount of regions, from politics to schooling and the media.



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Singapore at a turning stage: PM Lee to Singaporeans in Japan


TOKYO: Singapore is at a turning stage as it develops further than the pioneer technology of Singaporeans who developed it, mentioned Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong on Tuesday (Sep 27).

Talking at reception attended by about 400 Singaporeans dwelling in Japan, Mr Lee mentioned that at 50 a long time, Singapore is neither previous nor young. In actuality, it is a “a quite tough time for a country, mainly because you’re heading further than the individuals who remembered the commence, and heading into a new technology (of individuals) who are not really positive in which the long run is heading to be”.

About 400 Singaporeans dwelling in Japan turned up at the reception, in which PM Lee Hsien Loong was the visitor-of-honour. (Image: Linette Lim)

Mr Lee extra that for the subsequent fifty a long time and further than, Singaporeans will have to develop the long run for them selves – deciding on the way, the technique, and the values which will make the country thrive in the new planet.

“And it’s a harmful planet. But this tiny purple dot has created it for 50 a long time, and now the young tiny purple dotters will have to make it for quite a few much more than a further 50 a long time,” mentioned the Prime Minister.

“Being linked to the planet – Japan and China and America and Europe – being assured of ourselves, understanding what we can do and determine to do, and being able to operate alongside one another – I imagine if we can keep these values, we can keep this achievement,” mentioned Mr Lee. 

JAPAN AN “IMPORTANT FRIEND” TO SINGAPORE

The Prime Minister, who is in Tokyo for a 4-working day formal visit coinciding with the fiftieth anniversary of diplomatic relations concerning the two international locations, also named Japan as an “important friend” of the Republic.

Mr Lee spoke on how Japanese investments “made a large difference” to Singapore’s economy in the early a long time, and how there are 35,000 Japanese in Singapore, which include a person of the greatest overseas Japanese educational institutions in the planet.

“I imagine we have to have a person of the premier variety of Japanese eating places for each individual, in Singapore,” he quipped.

Touching on the bilateral relations concerning the two international locations, Mr Lee mentioned that this is a good marriage Singapore would like to cultivate and create even more, mainly because Japan has “a great deal to lead to the region”.

“We have a no cost trade settlement with them, it really is named JSEPA – Japan-Singapore Economic Partnership Arrangement – we hope we can enhance that, choose it even more methods forward… So the long and short of it is, we have a quite good marriage at the country-to-country level, and we’re also quite content that personal Singaporeans and Japanese are able to operate alongside one another with a person a further,” he extra.

In flip, Mr Lee mentioned he hopes that the Singaporeans dwelling in Japan can convey household some of the good values and routines and customs of the Japanese.

“They are quite disciplined, they queue up quite neatly, they never litter the streets, they operate quite tough, and they operate alongside one another cohesively as a person,” he mentioned, to laughter and applause among the the crowd.

“And these are the values we have to have as Singaporeans, and if we can keep them, and preserve them, then I imagine for quite a few much more a long time to arrive, we can celebrate Nationwide Working day, sing Majulah Singapura and have good motive to rejoice,” Mr Lee mentioned.  



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ESM Goh meets Kazakhstan Prime Minister reaffirms ties


SINGAPORE: Emeritus Senior Minister Goh Chok Tong reaffirmed his Singapore’s motivation to strengthening bilateral and economic cooperation with Kazakhstan as he satisfied Prime Minister Bakytzhan Sagintayev all through an formal check out to the state on Monday (26 Sep).

In a push statement on Tuesday, Singapore’s Ministry of International Affairs (MFA) included that Mr Goh also thanked Mr Sagintayev for Kazakhstan’s proactive support for the proposed Singapore-Eurasian Financial Union Absolutely free Trade Settlement.

In addition, Mr Goh was briefed on Kazakhstan’s EXPO 2017 with its topic of “Future Energy”. Singapore will be collaborating in the event, which will take place from Jun ten to Sep ten in Kazakh money Astana future 12 months, explained MFA.

On Tuesday, Mr Goh satisfied with and was hosted to lunch by the Chairman of the Senate of Parliament Kassym-Jomart Tokayev. Mr Goh talked about means to increase bilateral cooperation between Singapore and Kazakhstan, especially in the spots of education and learning, economic climate and general public administration.

Singapore’s Emeritus Senior Minister Goh Chok Tong (correct) with Chairman of the Senate of Parliament Kassym-Jomart Tokayev. (Image: MFA)

Mr Goh also resolved associates of the Kazakh Senate, telling them he was amazed by what he noticed in Astana. “The palpable vibrancy of the metropolis displays the vision of the Kazakh leadership in creating an superior and prosperous state in the heart of Eurasia.” 

Congratulating Kazakhstan on its 25th anniversary, Mr Goh explained: “Kazakhstan is a youthful state with an thrilling potential.”

He also touched on bilateral cooperation. “Our two international locations can examine collaboration to maximise each and every other’s strengths as hubs in their respective regions,” explained Mr Goh. 

He explained Singapore seeks to fortify economic relations with Kazakhstan by the Bilateral Expenditure Treaty and a absolutely free-trade settlement with the Eurasian Financial Union.

“Beyond Singaporean companies investing in Kazakhstan, we ought to also examine means to leverage Singapore’s status as an intercontinental money centre, and persuade other Asian companies to deliver investments into Kazakhstan by Singapore,” he included. 

Mr Goh also explained that there was “definite opportunity” for Singapore to perform collectively with Kazakhstan in Central Asia on the 1 Belt 1 Highway initiative. “Both Singapore and Kazakhstan are important nodes on the New Silk Highway,” he explained.



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Commentary: To really make a huge reduce, go over and above recycling


Our mounting waste trouble lies in a acquire-and-toss-absent lifestyle. In the midst of affluence, asks To Kien, can we care ample to repair service, reinvent and reuse our ‘old’ things?

SINGAPORE: The other working day I questioned my son, a Major four student at a local public school: “Do you find out and do decrease-reuse-recycle assignments at school?” “Mostly recycling, daddy. We only do some recyclables amassing competitions,” he responded, to my surprise.

Amongst the 3 ‘R’s, significantly more notice is compensated to recycling. It is crucial, but not paramount.

This yr, we go on to generate more waste and at the identical time, the recycling price has dropped. If this development persists, the Semakau landfill will be comprehensive by around 2035.

So how can the Governing administration notify and teach individuals nicely, when some of us – such as the elderly, younger youngsters or maids – really don’t ordinarily use the pc, surf the net, watch television or browse the newspapers?

Fairly than recycling as a heal for this condition, we require to aim more on waste prevention and on chopping off more at the resource, by practising what I call the Massive Minimize.

The Massive Minimize has 5Rs.

Minimize Number one: REFUSE, OR Refrain.

Let’s refuse pointless features refrain from supplying in to our wishes, and consider to stick to our requires. 

We can be considerate in even minor things, such as when we are about to improve a spoon and plate for the duration of a catered food, choose an more straw, or acquire choose-absent foam bins or plastic luggage.

The “buy 3 get one free” advertising is just one of several internet marketing tactics that persuade bulk order, alternatively than obtaining what we require. (Image: To Kien)

As a researcher and educator in a layout university, I like observing and pinpointing difficulties around us. Sometimes, they spark several layout thoughts and options. I’ll share some of these to supply food items for thought.

For instance, to support “refuse” our wishes, app designers could compose a basic app for buying that reminds us what we require to acquire, and warns us about what we do not require by prompting our pre-recorded inventory of all comparable merchandise stored at property.

Minimize Number two: WHEN WE Simply cannot REFUSE OR Refrain, Let’s Lower. 

A person of the 1st Entire world difficulties is excessive consumerism and the “abundance society”. Several of us have more footwear, luggage, household furniture or devices at property than we require and in fact use.

There are increasing indications, nevertheless, that such mass consumerism is slowing because of to demographic growing older, economic slowdown, resource shortage and so on and it is little by little remaining replaced by the rise of the sharing financial system and do-it-on your own (Diy) manufacturing.

When we provide property a ton, then component in storage house, we will realise we are in fact paying a ton, primarily in the high priced context of housing in Singapore.

Obtain much less, and inside designers can layout more inventive hybrid household furniture – such as couch-bed storage – for more compact households. This helps decrease household furniture buys and, ultimately, bulky trash. 

Sometimes, we finish up throwing absent expired food items because we purchased it in bulk. France not long ago passed a legislation that orders supermarkets to donate unconsumed food items approaching greatest-just before dates to charity. Singapore can find out from this. 

View: IT Figures on Food items Waste

When I was looking at about the 3Rs on the Nationwide Setting Agency’s site, just one suggestion to decrease waste bothered me: “Purchase merchandise in bulk quantities”. I advise examining it.

As for how to spur Singaporeans to decrease waste? A procedure of “pay as you throw” proposed by the NEA may operate.

Spotted on the NEA’s site

Minimize Number 3:  REUSE.

A person man’s waste, they say, is one more man’s treasure. As a substitute of throwing absent things that are nonetheless usable,  we  could hold garage profits or give absent merchandise no for a longer time needed to others who require them.

I don’t forget my childhood in Vietnam, when several “đồng nát” (junk-purchasers, comparable to Singapore’s karung guni gentlemen) frequently patrolled the metropolis to acquire or collect pretty much every little thing unused from households. You could listen to them coming with their melodic profits chants and horns.

It is not only in lessen-profits nations around the world, but also in some increased-profits kinds, that individuals practise this “reuse” lifestyle. Germany and Japan, where by I researched, are examples.

A person of my weekend pastimes in Germany was to stop by flea marketplaces. There I could come across not only shockingly great bargains, but also several beautiful and scarce household merchandise from around the environment to satisfy my amassing hobby.

Employed clothes, guides, chairs and even washing equipment at a flea sector in Geneva, Switzerland. (Image: To Kien)

In Japan, our form host ran a campus bazaar to assist international pupils like my wife and me. When we had little ones, we ended up heartened when she gave us some of her children’s pleasant old clothes that she had prudently kept – for 15 yrs.

2nd-hand retailers are well known – and as Japanese individuals use and hold their stuff quite thoroughly, just one can generally come across quite great pre-loved stuff in wonderful wide range, and for a genuine bargain.

The retailers ordinarily have a tiny workshop at the back where by staff acquire utilised stuff and then thoroughly clean, overhaul or beautify them on the spot. I don’t forget just one shop’s slogan: “We acquire and sell practically every little thing, besides airplanes.”

A second-hand store in Japan, where by just one can come across pretty much just about anything at a bargain. (Image: To Kien)

Singapore does not have several second-hand flea marketplaces. The most famed just one at Sungei Highway will before long near.

While some neighbourhood kinds are organised now and then by grassroots groups, we could set up for more of them on vacant pieces of lands or under-utilised pockets of house, and persuade households to take part.

We could give second-hand retailers a prospect as well, like people run by the Salvation Military and the Singapore Council of Women’s Organisations. Meanwhile, on the internet listings like Gumtree and groups such as SgFreecycle or Singapore Seriously Seriously Free of charge Market place are handy. They link like-minded individuals and market a sharing and pooling lifestyle.

Bought at Sungei Road’s Thieves’ sector. (Pictures: Ooi Ebook Keong)

Minimize Number four:  Mend. 

Fixing discourages our throwaway lifestyle and can make us value what we have.

Several old merchandise, such as offers or souvenirs, carry reminiscences. We want to make use of them until they are really unusable.

It is generally because getting an item repaired could charge just about as significantly as obtaining a brand name-new variation, that several of us make a decision to choose the second possibility. This is why in Sweden, the govt is now proposing tax breaks on repairs to every little thing from footwear to washing equipment, so that it can make economic sense to get broken things fastened.

My spouse and children cycles every day, and I ordinarily repair service our loyal “two-wheeled friends”. But I have observed several bicycles thrown absent just because of minor faults, such as an internal tube puncture. 

I fix my possess bicycles, right here on my patio. (Image: To Kien)

It is great if somebody in the spouse and children can fix things. The pleasure we get when we realize success in creatively restoring anything on our possess is great. But if no just one in the spouse and children has the abilities, it would be wonderful if we could choose the stuff to a nearby “fix hub”.

My thought is to have just one in just about every precinct, located in a group club or centre. This community could website link up with the emerging makerspace motion in Singapore, so that individuals can share their abilities and methods such as house, instruments and extra elements.

At a recent workshop that I convened as component of a analysis project in Jurong East, some people expressed that they would like to have a Diy workshop or maker house (for restoring things) as nicely as weekend bazaars (to trade merchandise for reuse) in their neighbourhood.

Each individual school in Singapore could set up a “fix lab”, as well.

View: Mend Kopitiam helps you find out how to fix stuff

Ultimately, Minimize Number 5:  REMAKE.

When anything just cannot be fastened regardless of our endeavours, we can dismantle it and repurpose the pieces to make anything new, or even repair service anything else that is broken.

I do subject surveys extensively for operate. In several acquiring nations around the world, I’m generally stunned to see individuals restoring and remaking things so creatively and broadly.

There is a phrase, reverse innovation, which refers to an innovation observed to start with (or likely to be utilised to start with) in the acquiring environment just before spreading to the industrialised environment. Fixing and remaking foster such improvements. 

I had a spoilt enthusiast, and I kept its heavy base to make the base of a yard parasol (the major component, which I purchased from IKEA, in shape beautifully). I also had a coat stand no for a longer time in use, and I repurposed it to dangle planters on my patio. 

The repurposed enthusiast base and coat stand. My little ones also remade a utilised plastic container into a watering can. (Image: To Kien)

To remake things, we may require frequent “banks” of re-usable pieces. Let’s layout and supply shelves at HDB void decks or condominium amenity hubs, with 3 labels: ‘Fully reusable’, ‘Reusable but requires fixing’, and ‘Parts only’.

Then, persuade individuals to location their unwelcome merchandise on the suited shelf for others to choose freely.

I generally train my son how to repair service or remake things as an critical lifestyle ability. A person working day, when his sister sat on his cherished soccer ball and accidentally exploded it, he was upset and his pals told him to toss it absent.

He reported, “No, I’ll fix it.”

In the evening, he and I examined the torn ball. Even though the internal bladder could not be mended, we remade the ball by obtaining a S$two Daiso rubber ball to set within, pumped it up, sewed back the include – and voilà! Completely ready for kick-off.

View: How we fastened my son’s ball

Conquering PREJUDICES

The journey to a lower-waste foreseeable future is bumpy. There are several frequent prejudices to defeat.

1st, the pondering that “it’s the authorities’ job”.

The authorities can improve waste assortment and management systems, set up new fix-hubs, improve guidelines and improve public consciousness. But to improve people’s habits, mindsets, behaviours and steps, it’s up to all of us.  

2nd: “I really don’t see where by my trash ends up, so I really don’t care”.

Let’s get in the deal with of trash throwers. Confront them with pics and graphics exhibited on the sides of refuse chutes or bins, displaying where by their trash ends up. In public spaces, demonstrate visuals of the Semakau landfill filling up about time, with genuine-time figures up to date periodically.

The Semakau landfill. (Currently file picture)

3rd: “Other individuals really don’t apply this. Why really should I?”

Properly, if just one by just one all people begins practising the Massive Minimize, we’ll see several tiny alterations, and finally a huge transformation will occur.

Fourth: “Second-hand? Mend? We are not that bad, we have our delight!”

Substance standing is crucial in recently affluent societies, and Singaporeans have been no much less wrapped up in the 5Cs – cash, credit history card, motor vehicle, apartment, state club. 

Yet, as societies progress and mature, mindsets, value systems and judging indicators start to change in direction of a new set of Cs – creativity, collaboration, contribution, compassion and confidence. It will become no for a longer time about pounds and cents, but about caring for our earth.

Anyone A Champion

And as mindsets improve, permit each just one of us start championing the Massive Minimize. Let’s demonstrate our households and neighbors how it’s performed, and we can do it progressively.

1st, start off in our property.

I taught my son by doing a tiny social experiment. He had a toy motor vehicle in great affliction that he no for a longer time performed with. He and I needed to give it to somebody but we didn’t know who would require it.

I advised, “Let’s provide it to the playground, depart it there and see what occurs.” And he did so excitedly.  

View: Who would want an old toy motor vehicle?

When we arrived back on distinct days and at several occasions, we witnessed distinct youngsters participating in cheerfully with the toy and even scrambling for it. “Are you delighted to see your neighbours’ pals delighted?” I questioned. My son smiled and nodded.

Following, our neighbourhood.

I suggest location up, in just about every neighbourhood, a tiny library of at times-utilised instruments such as mechanical sets, drillers and plumbing tools, with a small cost per use. Such a shared library can support neighbours bond, and it can be related with fix-hubs.

For now, all people can do as I did – build an inventory list of instruments applying Google Documents, for sharing amid pals. This helps each member hold track of who has what instruments that they can borrow.

A MacBook Pro battery substitution celebration. (Image: Facebook.com/RepairKopitiam)

Then, educational facilities and universities.

They can provide as design mini-societies, championing the Massive Minimize amid the future generation. I have co-mentored a number of student assignments on the 3Rs, and it is inspiring to see younger Singaporeans demonstrate their creativity in their sense of accountability for the setting.

Ultimately, island-large communities.

I’ve stated a few in this report, but there are others rallying against the throwaway lifestyle by urging individuals to provide their possess containers, to repair service alternatively than toss absent, and to Diy.

Our endeavours to refuse, decrease, reuse, repair service and remake in several tiny ways necessarily mean we conserve huge at the finish of the working day. We will all collectively assure a far better setting for ourselves, our loved kinds and foreseeable future generations.

Dr To Kien is an Adjunct Assistant Professor at the Singapore University of Technological innovation and Structure (SUTD). He is a accredited architect, researcher and educator in City Setting up, Social Architecture and Sustainable Structure. He has been a Useful resource Human being on the Singapore Institute of Architects’ Sustainability Committee because 2013.



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