We thank Mr Alfred Loh Lye Chye ("Engine-idling a major source of PM2.5 pollutant"; Monday), Mr Harpal Singh ("Some ways to reduce engine-idling"), Mr Louis Francis Albert ("Move carparks farther away from flats"; both on Thursday), Mr Eric J. Brooks ("Banning engine-idling would benefit all") and Mr Ken Lai ("Engine-idling: Rigorous enforcement needed"; both Forum Online, Thursday) for their feedback and suggestions to reduce engine-idling.
Like many other major cities, air emissions from local industries and motor vehicles are two major sources of air pollution in Singapore.
We assure the public that the National Environment Agency is implementing a suite of measures in order to improve and enhance our air quality.
In August last year, we announced an air quality road map with new air quality targets which are based on the World Health Organisation's Air Quality Guidelines. These final guidelines for PM2.5 (particulate matter smaller than 2.5 microns) will be Singapore's long-term target.
The road map includes a set of abatement measures, some of which are in the pipeline for implementation.
We also have in place various efforts to mitigate pollution from motor vehicles.
For instance, we have stepped up enforcement against vehicles with idling engines and have taken enforcement action against 2,467 errant drivers last year, and against another 2,631 errant drivers from January to October this year.
As part of outreach efforts to raise public awareness, we regularly engage stakeholders such as the Singapore School & Private Hire Bus Owners' Association, the Singapore School Transport Association, the public transport operators (bus/taxi operators) and the National Association of Travel Agents Singapore to disseminate educational messages and pamphlets to their drivers.
We have also worked with schools, to distribute educational posters and pamphlets to educate and remind parents, as well as private school transport operators, to switch off their vehicle engines while waiting to pick up the school children.
In addition, we work closely with the authorised vehicle inspection centres (Vicom, JIC Inspection Services and STA Inspection) to distribute educational pamphlets to motorists during their mandatory vehicle inspections.
At the same time, we are working with the relevant authorities to install anti-idling engine signage at locations where vehicles are likely to congregate, such as schools, parks and loading/unloading bays.
We encourage the public to call us on 1800-CALL-NEA (1800-2255-632) to report idling engines or e-mail us at Contact_NEA@nea.gov.sg
Fong Peng Keong
Pollution Control Department National Environment Agency
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