PUB launches annual water conservation campaign: ‘Save water. Big ways, small ways. All OK!’

Singapore’s National Water Agency PUB launched its annual water conservation campaign with a community event at Jurong Lake Gardens on 9 Mar 2024, graced by President Tharman Shanmugaratnam and attended by more than 2,000 participants. Themed ‘Save water. Big ways, small ways. All OK!’, this year’s campaign held in conjunction with celebrations for Singapore World Water Day (SWWD).

Jurong Lake Gardens is under PUB’s Active, Beautiful, Clean Waters (ABC Waters) programme, an initiative to foster greater appreciation of water by maximising the potential of Singapore’s water bodies (Image: PUB)

According to PUB, the per capita household water consumption in 2023 was 141L, maintaining a downward trend from 149L in 2022. Under the Singapore Green Plan 2030, the goal is to reduce household water consumption to 130L per person a day. In March, schools, community groups, corporate partners, and NGOs will be engaging their stakeholders to further raise awareness and promote water sustainability. This is one of the three focuses of the campaign, which is to encourage water efficiency among households and businesses. The other two key message is promoting water conservation and recognising public efforts in conserving water.

From 15 Apr 2024, all Housing and Development Board (HDB) households will receive S$300 worth of climate vouchers to purchase water and energy efficient appliances, as part of PUB’s enhancement of the Climate Friendly Households programme to encourage households to be more efficient in their use of energy and water.

The latest household water consumption study conducted by PUB from 2021-2022 with about 400 households indicated that 80% of their total water usage comprised showering, flushing, washing in the kitchen, and laundry, and these remained the largest water consuming areas in households. By switching to more efficient appliances and fittings, households can reduce their water consumption, lower their utility bills, reduce greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs), and play their part in slowing down climate change.  

For households using less water-efficient fittings and flushing cisterns, that are below 2-tick Mandatory Water Efficiency Labelling Scheme (MWELS) ratings, PUB Water Saver Pack can help to reduce water usage. The pack includes flush saver cistern bags, thimbles for showerheads, kitchen sinks or bathroom basin taps, as well as leak detection tablets for the flushing cistern.

Speaking at the event, President Tharman reminded Singaporeans to consider the water used to make furniture, food and clothes. “Everything we consume actually consumes water somewhere in the world. There is a water footprint, just like there is a carbon footprint in everything we consume,” he said.

Pointing out that agriculture — especially beef as the biggest consumer of water globally — the president encouraged a change of diet: eating less beef, pork and chicken and shift to vegetable-based proteins. “This is one way in which we can keep enjoying life, but shift our diet and contribute to solving a major global problem, which is a water crisis, which also leads to a climate crisis,” he said.