Programme to get teens to root for green causes

Programme to get teens to root for green causes
Newater processing plant.

An ambitious scheme launched on Monday is giving teens a crash course in all things green, including trips to St John's Island, the Urban Redevelopment Authority's City Gallery and the Newater plant.

The initiative - a joint effort by the National University of Singapore (NUS) and the Singapore Technologies Endowment Programme (Step) - aims to turn 130 participants into champions of environmental protection.

Apart from the field trips, the five-day programme includes lectures on environmental issues and calls on the students to present environmental papers they had prepared earlier.

The papers will cover topics relating to the environment, such as energy, pollution and food security.

Participant Jonathan Chee, 14, from Bukit View Secondary School told The Straits Times: "I'd like to know how changes in our climate affect our economy, way of life and food production."

The Step-NUS Sunburst Environment Programme, as the initiative is called, will be an annual affair targeting young people aged between 13 and 15 in Singapore and the region.

Step chairman Leo Tan, who is also director of special projects at the NUS Faculty of Science, said the green message is best planted in the minds of the young.

"(As) an adult, you have fixed notions of how things are," added Professor Tan.

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