Date Published: 10 Nov 2006
President S R Nathan will confer the inaugural President’s Award for the Environment on the evening of 10 November 2006, at the Istana to three worthy recipients who have made significant contributions to Singapore’s efforts to achieve environmental sustainability.
2 The President’s Award for the Environment was introduced this year to honour individuals, organisations and companies who have had an excellent environment track record, made high impact contributions to the environment, and have adopted and promoted good environmental practices both within and beyond themselves or their organisations. Nominations for the Award were open from 30 May to 31 July this year.
3 The inaugural award winners are:
a. Professor Tommy Koh
b. Dr Geh Min
c. Waterways Watch Society (WWS)
4 Congratulating the recipients, Minister for the Environment and Water Resources, Dr Yaacob Ibrahim said: “This is the highest accolade in Singapore’s Environment and Water Resources field. The winners are a good blend of active citizens who have made a significant impact and contribution from the highest level of decision-making and diplomacy, to the grassroots levels actually activating such change. I am confident that as first winners of the award they will inspire more of us to strive, care and make a difference to our environment in our own unique ways, whether as individuals, as groups or as companies.”
5 To reflect the stature of the Award, these year’s winners had been selected by an Evaluation Committee consisting of prominent individuals in the 3P sectors (People, Public and Private) in the environmental arena as follows:
Assoc Professor Simon Tay, Chairman, National Environment Agency
a. Mr Charles Chong, Chairman, Government Parliamentary Committee for National Development and Environment
b. Mr Heng Chiang Meng, Chairman, Singapore Environment Council;
c. Ms Olivia Lum, President, Singapore Water Association;
d. Mrs Rosa Daniel, Deputy Secretary, Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources
6 Prof Tay recalled: “A total of 39 nominations were received -- individuals, private companies, educational institutions, non-governmental and grassroots organisations. We were heartened to learn about the range of environmental activities being driven by all these nominees. We were also very glad that the award has been established and that there are so many deserving nominees. "
7 Prof Tay also added: "For this inaugural award, we wanted individuals who are well acknowledged for their contributions and set an example for us all. Prof Tommy Koh is so well known for his contributions to the environment, not only in Singapore but also internationally, for a more environmentally sustainable world. Dr Geh Min has been an active and responsible leader for the Nature Society of Singapore, one of the leading civil society groups. She has also built bridges for environmental issues as a Nominated Member of Parliament as well as in co-chairing one of the focus groups in last year’s review of the Singapore Green Plan 2012.”
8 Prof Tay also remarked: “We were also happy to acknowledge an organisation of volunteers, i.e. Waterways Watch Society. They are a relatively new group, and pioneers to help citizens connect to water. As an organisation of volunteers, they also help us see that all of us can make a contribution.”
9 Each of the winners will receive a certificate as well as a trophy which was produced by Singaporean contemporary ceramics artist and Cultural Medallion winner, Mr Iskandar Jalil. Said the artist: “The myriad hues of earthy, blue and green colours on Professor Koh and Dr Geh’s trophies mirror the colours found in our natural environment. The shape of a watering can acknowledges their contributions in nurturing our environment. The trophy for Waterways Watch Society makes one think of a water vessel which needs to be held by both hands, conjuring images of water as a precious resource that needs to be treasured by everyone.”
Hawker Food at Dinner Reception
10 The dinner reception after the award ceremony at the Istana will feature authentic hawker fare from popular stalls from around the island. These will include favourites such as Hainanese chicken rice, rojak, satay and thosai. Dalson Chung, Director/3P Network Division, MEWR remarked: “It is the first time that hawker food is being served in a ceremony held at the Istana. Hawker centre food is a true Singapore icon, and the fact that such food is being served at such a momentous ceremony and location is a great testimony not only to the quality of the food but also the high standards of preparation.”
MINISTRY OF THE ENVIRONMENT AND WATER RESOURCES
10 NOVEMBER 2006