Singapore — Trending across party lines is the need to protect our green spaces.

Netizens were shocked last month (January) by the news that the Dover forest would be zoned for residential use. People wanted the forest preserved.

Photo: Facebook screengrab/ Dover-Ulu Pandan Forest

Workers’ Party MP Leon Perera will be taking up the issue in Parliament like the Progress Singapore Party (PSP) NCMP Leong Mun Wai .

Mr Perera shared the questions he filed for Parliament. One is about natural heritage.

Parliament sits next week. Here are a few questions I filed.

Posted by Leon Perera on Saturday, 13 February 2021

He will ask about Bukit Brown, and if there are any plans to develop the cemetery area. This is in relation to the 2011 controversy, when nearly 4000 graves were cleared to make way for an eight-lane road to reduce traffic congestion in the area.

“Bukit Brown is the final resting place of our forefathers, and home to a rich ecosystem including dangerous wildlife,” the MP stated in his Facebook post on Sunday (Feb 14). He also noted that most of the area had been earmarked in the URA masterplan for residential zoning. This would mean the area would likely be cleared in the future.

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PSP NCMP Leong Mun Wai also recently stressed the need to protect greenery.

During the last parliament sitting on Feb 1 and 2, the NCMP shared the need to curb deforestation and how it is imperative to protect what little remains of Singapore’s natural wildlife and vegetation.

If current trends of immigration and speculative real estate investment continue, it will not be long before the only space left to build on will be the few pockets of greenery that remain.
— Posted by Progress Singapore Party on Facebook

He urged Singapore to “stop sacrificing green spaces for population growth and property prices”, noting that the Dover forest and the nearby Clementi forest were both zoned for residential development.

Photo: Facebook screengrab/ Progress Singapore Party

He said the demand for housing would grow as Singapore’s population increased. The current solution would be to clear the forests since the land is unused. However, the green spaces in Singapore are home to many species of wildlife — and are regions which some feel ought to remain protected.

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Denise Teh is an intern at The Independent SG. /TISG