Pulau Hantu - A celebration of marine life

Secret lives and secret worlds hidden in Singapore's most popular coral reef.

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Iconic Hantu Seastar represented in IUCN newsletter

In the Marine Highlights for the 3rd IUCN World Conservation Congress, a photograph of the Icon seastar Iconocaster longimanus was represented in the article on marine species loss, along with the representations of Humphead wrasse and Grouper.

It is wonderful that the Hantu Blog is able to serve as a resource that is accessed and utilised by international organisations.

Monday, July 25, 2005

Abby's Beting Bronok

Biologist Abby Ng visited Singapore northern island Beting Bronok on Sunday morning, and what a gorgeous Sunday morning it was - steeped in local natural heritage, probably the way Wallace saw it in 1854...

It's a pity not all Singaporeans get an opportunity to embrace a sunrise like this...

Thursday, July 21, 2005

Public Forum on Spore Green Plan

Public forum to be held for views on Singapore Green Plan
Channel NewsAsia, 16 Jul 05
MEWR press release, 16 Jul 05

Date: 27 July 05 (Wed)
Time: 7pm
Venue: Environment Building, 4th floor theatrette
40 Scotts Road
Pre-registration required as seats limited
to register, email MEWR_SGP@mewr.gov.sg
or call 1800-738 4622

The key issues being discussed:
a. Climate change
b. Waste reduction
c. Water resources
d. Cleanliness in hawker centres and public areas
e. Greater appreciation and care for our natural heritage.

full reports: http://www.wildsingapore.com/news/20050708/050718-4.htm

Harm to marine life to be minimised - Minister of State (Trade and Industry) Heng Chee How

Parliament Shorts. Straits Times, 21 Jul 2005.
Harm to marine life to be minimised.

"Care will be taken to minimise damage to the marine environment when the land around the southern island of Pulau Ular is reclaimed, Minister of State (Trade and Industry) Heng Chee How assured the House yesterday.

He was responding to Nominated MP Geh Min, president of the Nature Society, who asked if studies were done to assess the impact of reclamation on surrounding corals and marine life.

One was commissioned three years ago, said Mr Heng. It showed that marine life would not be endangered if the release of silt into the water was minimised.

The JTC Corp, which is undertaking the project, would use landfill materials with low silt content and monitor the process. It would also relocate corals to other locations if these were affected."

Hmm..since when has coral relocation become successful enough to become an alternative?

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Lend us your vocals!

The Hantu Blog is aware of the several letters you have sent to Shell.

While Shell has stated it is not responsible for the reclamation procedures to be carried out on Ular and Bukom, it doesn't mean that your voices didn't lend an effect.

Your letters have spoken up for Pulau Hantu, and given her a voice. The corporations have been informed that there is a community and an environment that's worth paying attention to, and that's all thanks to you.

The Hantu Blog is heartened that our request for additional imformation, made together with the Blue Water Volunteers, regarding the project extent and environmental impact data will be looked into, and we look forward to working with Shell to achieve better management and conservation of marine resources in Singapore. Additionally, we will be making contact with the Jurong Town Corporation (JTC) to discuss the reclamation processes.

The open feedback channel proposed during the meeting between Shell Singapore and local conservation groups will be maximised, and we look forward to similar fruitful exchanges in the future.

The Blog encourages you to send a letter to Shell, in appreciation of their progressive repsonse.

Thursday, July 07, 2005

No Shell involvement

On Jul 4, 2005, Shell Companies in Singapore addressed the concerns of the Hantu Blog and the Blue Water Volunteers, by spelling out JTC's management of the reclamation of Pulau Ular and Bukom. The operation of the cracker plant however will remain the responsibility of Shell.

The Hantu Blog and the Blue Water Volunteers remain in discussion with Shell.

Dear Tse-Lynn, Debby and Blue Water Volunteers

Thank you for sharing your views with us through below correspondence which we received with the CD rom and photographs the week of 27 June 2005, and a fruitful discussion this morning.

We appreciate the sentiments which you have expressed but the land reclamation which you referred to will actually be undertaken by JTC Corporation, on behalf of the Government. We understand that this is part of the Singapore Government's master plan for national development. We have been advised that JTC are consulting relevant agencies and international experts to address environmental concerns and safeguards at an early stage and that they are studying and reviewing international good reclamation practices which they can adopt. However, JTC would be the most appropriate party to directly comment on these.

We confirm that Shell is currently progressing with the next phase of a proposed world-scale cracker and derivatives project in Singapore. This entails significant investments and is planned to be a collaboration between Shell and the Economic Development Board. This will eventually occupy a part of the land reclaimed by JTC.

In developing the project, Shell will take appropriate measures to minimise impact on the environment. Shell is committed to Sustainable Development, integrating the three essential elements of sustainability - economic, social and environmental and balancing long and short-term priorities. In the process, we will ensure that the needs of the present generation are met without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.

Please rest assured that Shell will work together with JTC and other authorities for the best sustainable development option.

Yours sincerely

Caroline Loke
Head, Social Investment
Shell Companies in Singapore
Tel: 65-6384 8953

Saturday, July 02, 2005

Adopt a reef, and save the coral

The Straits Times, 28 Jun 05
By Chang Ai-Lien Science Correspondent

IN SINGAPORE'S most ambitious undersea conservation effort to date, stretches of artificial reefs that will ring the Southern Islands are being put up for adoption.

For $360, donors will get to be surrogate parents to a 70cm circular reef home - a hollow dome-shaped fibreglass structure which will be anchored to the seabed in 5m deep waters. Coated with limestone, the reef home will allow coral to easily attach itself.

Read the full story...

A year of discoveries shared

2nd July 2005 (Saturday, 3 to 4pm)
The Programme Zone, library@Orchard
'Southern Haunt'

Forty-minutes from Singapore's mainland is an island that has been enjoyed and exploited for decades. In the past years, Pulau Hantu ('Ghost island' in Malay) has remained mostly unheard of and even shunned by the same community which once celebrated her. Debby Ng, founder of The Hantu Bloggers, revisits the jewel of our Southern Islands, and shares a year of discoveries.

Admission is free!

More info on BWV at www.bluewatervolunteers.org. Enquiries are welcomed,email BWV at reeftalk@bluewatervolunteers.org. Free seating and standing space available. Plus there will be a display of posters on local marine life so be early to check out. See you at the talk!