47 percent “greenery” – so what?

Many people have been sharing Prof Tommy Koh’s piece in Saturday’s Straits Times (19 May), titled “What Singapore can learn from Europe”.

On my part, I’ll just highlight a paragraph that I’m a little afraid most people would skim through a little too quickly:

…people there love nature and their natural heritage. They seem to have an emotional, even a spiritual, relationship with nature. They love their forests, lakes and fjords. In contrast, most Singaporeans tend to have a more pragmatic relationship with nature. They apply a cost-benefit analysis to the destruction of a natural heritage. Pragmatism is one of our virtues. We should, however, be aware of the defects of our virtues. Not everything in life can be monetised.

Prof Tommy Koh is also the patron of the Nature Society (Singapore).

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