Environment Waste Management Solid Waste Management Municipal Solid Waste Management

How will Singapore defuse a 16-year waste timebomb?

Municipal Solid Waste Management


Singapore's only landfill, the purpose-built trash island of Semakau is projected to be completely full by 2035 and strategies to avoid filling the site completely by 2035 as projected are not working. This article reveals expert perspectives on Singapore’s new waste masterplan.

Perspectives and insights

  • There has been some improvement from online food delivery companies in Singapore to significantly reduce plastic use.
  • They have co-located a new incineration plant with the used water reclamation facility to derive synergies when they combine them for better efficiency and resource recovery. The food waste collected can also be co-digested with used water sludge from wastewater, increasing the amount of biogas produced.
  • Singapore recycles 99 per cent of its construction waste.

Xoologue - a discussion between Xoo and Moo

Moo: It’s amazing, Moo, how an advanced country like Singapore is relying heavily on incineration rather than most sophisticated solutions like gasification for managing their municipal solid waste.

Xoo: Shows how challenging sustainable solid waste management is. If Singapore, a state known for its meticulous planning and efficiency is struggling, is it any wonder that most of rest of the world is in deeper trouble when it comes to waste management!

Moo: So, is there a takeaway, Xoo?

Xoo: I wouldn’t call this a takeaway but I think it make sense for the rest of the world to keenly observe what Singapore is doing and more importantly, what it is not! Because if Singapore can’t do something, I wouldn’t suggest lesser mortals to attempt it