[sustran] Re: fwd: Singapore car free day April 14

Sujit Patwardhan sujit at vsnl.com
Fri Mar 16 01:55:16 JST 2001

15 March 2001

Dear Paul,
Is it April 14th (as in the subject line) or 19th (as in the body of the
There is already some doubts in the minds of some groups here who insist
that the Earth Day is 22 April and ask how the Vehicle Free Day which we
are trying to organize in Pune, India, on 19th can be a part of Earth Day
Best wishes,

At 04:58 PM 3/15/01 +0800, you wrote:
>The Straits Times interactive
>Mar 14, 2001 
>Do leave home without it
>Singapore's first Car-Free Day aims to get motorists to be more eco-friendly
>and to take public transport instead 
>By Sharmilpal Kaur 
>LEAVE your car at home and take a bus, the train, a bicycle or, simply,
>It is a big call for car-loving Singaporeans, but that is what the Singapore
>Environment Council (SEC) wants them to do for just one day.
>Thursday, April 19, that is. That is when SEC is holding Singapore's first
>Car-Free Day.
>The event will also be held worldwide then.
>Car-Free Day started in the US and Europe in the 1960s when several large
>cities began to suffer from serious air pollution and congestion. 
>Since then, it has grown so popular that certain roads in Europe are closed
>on that day. 
>SEC executive director Penelope Phoon said: 'This throws out a challenge to
>car-loving Singaporeans to leave their cars behind for a day, to promote an
>eco-friendly lifestyle.'
>Mr Howard Shaw, SEC's senior manager, said: 'Resource-wise, cars are not
>very efficient at all.'
>The Environment Ministry is getting right behind the event, pledging that
>its carparks will be empty on that day.
>Mr Sidek Saniff, Senior Minister of State for the Environment, is leading by
>example by going car-free that morning.
>Acting Minister for the Environment Lim Swee Say will be out of town.
>Companies will be encouraged to get their employees to leave their cars at
>The SEC will have a media blitz to promote the event. It will also place
>posters on buses and hang banners at 120 locations. 
>It has printed 17,000 TransitLink farecards to commemorate the event. 
>The SEC will also work with the Singapore Sports Council to promote cycling
>as an alternative to driving. 
>While the SEC recognises that the battle will be an uphill one, the main aim
>is to decrease dependence on cars while raising awareness of a greener
>Ms Phoon said: 'The main objective of the campaign is to drum up awareness,
>in a bid to encourage people to switch to alternative modes of transport.
>'We are looking at a 10-per-cent reduction in vehicle use on that day.'
>The Land Transport Authority will monitor the number of cars going into the
>city area and compare this figure with the usual number. The information
>will help the SEC gauge the success of the event.
>The Straits Times drew mixed reactions from the motorists interviewed.
>Salesman David Chua, 42, said: 'In an ideal situation, that would be great.
>'But I still drive because public transportation is still not convenient
>enough. I also wonder if this one-day campaign will really have any effect
>at all.'
>But housewife Mala Reaghavan, 40, said: 'Yes, definitely, because that would
>mean less pollution for the environment, even though it would be a little
>more inconvenient for me.'
>The event is part of Earth Day 2001 celebrations. Although April 19 is three
>days before Earth Day, it was chosen because a weekday was a better time to
>study the impact of having fewer cars.
>Copyright © 2001 Singapore Press Holdings Ltd. All rights reserved. 
>Forwarded for the purposes of education and research. 
>Dr Paul Barter
>Visiting Fellow
>Department of Geography
>National University of Singapore
>1 Arts Link, Singapore 117570
>Tel: +65-874 3860; Fax: +65-777 3091
>E-mail: geobpa at nus.edu.sg
>(I'm also known as A Rahman Paul Barter)


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