Environmental Challenge Organisation (Singapore), or ECO Singapore, is a not-for-profit social enterprise. ECO Singapore aims to establish a voluntary environmental movement, thereby creating opportunities for active involvement by Singaporean youths, instilling a sense of commitment and awareness of environmental issues and global hazards. By providing youths a holistic approach towards environmental issues, ECO Singapore’s mission is to encourage youths to take initiative and choose to live environmentally sustainable lifestyles. ECO Singapore was registered in 2002 under the Registrar of Societies, Singapore, and is run solely by volunteers. However, it was only in December 2005 when ECO Singapore began operationalising herself. ECO Singapore’s main differentiating factor is its promotion of environmental issues in a more holistic manner. It achieves this by sharing its expertise, resources and volunteer pool with existing local and regional environment groups. To attract and instill a sense of responsibility as a global citizen among youths, ECO Singapore consistently seeks to repackage environmental issues to make it more youth-oriented. It conducts environmental forums and produces its in-house magazine on a quarterly basis to keep youths, corporate partners, and environmental groups and organisations abreast of environmental developments on both local and global scales. ECO Singapore represents Singapore as a member at — and is also the Secretariat of — the Asia Youth Environmental Network (AYEN), which was formed in 2003 together with seven other Asian countries (Bangladesh, Brunei Darussalam, India, Malaysia, Maldives, Pakistan and Sri Lanka) and is supported by the Commonwealth Youth Program. ECO Singapore is also a founding member of the ASEM Youth Network for Sustainable Development. ECO Singapore was also recently nominated to be the National Focal Point of South East Asia Youth Environment Network (SEAYEN). ___________________________________________________________________
Current Youth Fellowship to COP21/CMP11(Paris, France from 30 November-12 December 2015) Boo Yi Lin Yi Lin is currently a Year 3 Business Undergraduate. She volunteers in environmental and grassroot organizations, specializing in environmental projects. She has an interest in international affairs, and is Director at the International Affairs Society at her school. She was involved in Model United Nations conferences as a business student. She believes in good communication and continues to blog regularly. Lalit Kumar Lalit is with the Project Delivery team at Sindicatum Sustainable Resources, Singapore. He has a degree in Environmental Engineering from the Nanyang Technological University. During his undergraduate studies, he participated in internships at Agastya Transmissions and Technologies – Waste Management of LED devices in India, as well as Sindicatum Sustainable Resources, Singapore. He attributes his knowledge, skill-sets and interest in renewable energy and the impact of international policies on the public/private sectors to these internships. Lalit has a keen interest in music and performs, records and composes music in various genres ranging from Indian Classical Music to World Music. Jeffrey Tong Jeffrey is a sophomore from Yale-NUS College majoring in environmental studies. As Vice-President of my college’s sustainability movement I’dECO, he oversee key projects in environmental education, urban farming and an upcoming Singapore Sustainable Solutions Network. He is also Co-Founder of the Chili Padi Academy, a regional environmental leadership accelerator program for senior high school students. Driving him and his endeavors is my passion in issues of climate justice, and he would like to see greater opportunities for equitable and sustainable development in the region. Jacqueline Lee Jacqueline is currently a third year undergraduate at the National University of Singapore, pursuing a B.A. (Hons) in English Literature and double minor in Film and Gender Studies. She spent two years at the University Town Residential Program (Tembusu College) and had the opportunity of being exposed to consecutive semester-long seminars on ‘Climate Change’ and ‘Literature and Ecology’. These programs provided Jacqueline with both fiction and nonfiction material to reflect on the effect of climate change on ecology. As a literature major and someone who thinks that books can change the world, she advocates that the world needs more novels that delve into environmental concerns and represent current anxieties in an accessible manner. Priscilla Seah Priscilla recently graduated with a Fisheries Management degree. She is passionate about conservation and climate change and is driven with the desire to impart knowledge of environmental conservation and preservation to the public. She believes that this Fellowship with ECO Singapore provides the platform for her to share information readily and to learn more about climate change issues that Singapore and the world are facing. Stacy Wong Xinying Stacy currently teaches Geography at a secondary school in Singapore. She attributes her enthusiasm for environmental activism to her time spent studying in New York, where she was inspired by passionate individuals from her university and in her interactions with NGOs. She participated in the ASEAN Power Shift 2015 organized by 350 Singapore and Young NTUC held in Singapore in July. Stacy believes that education is one of the key ways to create a more environmentally-conscious world and that youth should be given a greater voice to fight for the kind of world they would be living in. For Stacy, the Fellowship is one way to show her students the importance of dreaming big and working towards one’s aspirations. Nilmini Leybourn, Coordinator Nilmini recently moved to Singapore. She was a senior sustainability policy and programme management specialist with experience in Australian Federal and State Governments. Her academic background includes post-graduate qualifications in Integrated Water Resources Management and environmental economics.In her previous roles, Nilmini has experience in stakeholder engagement (including industry groups, NGOs and governments), coordinating scientific and economic analysis teams and applying critical scrutiny to natural resource, food security and public policy problems. She is excited to join ECO Singapore as its International Affairs Coordinator and looks forward to supporting and mentoring the Fellows through their 12 months in the programme.
Youth Delegation to COP20/CMP10(Lima, Peru from 1-12 December 2014)
The COP 20 delegation team in a selfie with then Minister for Environment and Water Resources, Dr. Vivian Balakrishnan in Lima, Peru.
Juliana Chia Juliana is in her final year of undergraduate studies in Geography at the National University of Singapore. Concerned with the varying levels of vulnerability that different communities face around the world, she reads actively on issues relating to climate change and enjoys watching movies with related themes. Juliana hopes that by attending COP20, she will be able to accrue greater knowledge and be in a stronger position to influence people around her to make active changes in their daily lives. Juliana served as Marketing Director in the NUS Geographical Society’s 47th Management Committee and together with her team raised more than S$20,000 for the nation-wide Geography Challenge in 2013. She has experience overseas, participating in an NUS field investivation in Phnom Penh, Cambodia and completed a student exchange programme in Paris, France.
Nor Lastrina Binte Hamid Nor Lastrina recently graduated from Australia’s RMIT University with a Bachelor’s degree in Business (Management). While studying, Lastrina remained active in the environmental NGO sphere, organizing numerous community outreach events and the ECO Singapore World Leadership Conference in 2011 which culminated in a combined document of regional consultation to be submitted to the Rio+20 Agenda. Most recently, Lastrina, with 350 Singapore, led the Singapore Power Shift 2014. The event attracted more than 50 youths from East Asia, featured speakers from local and overseas groups and played host to the former President of the Maldives, Mohamed Nasheed. Passionate about youth activism, Lastrina has participated in the Youth Environmental Envoy Programme (National Environment Agency), the East Asia Climate Leadership Workshop in Bogor, Indonesia and the Global Power Shift Workshop in Istanbul, Turkey (both by 350.org). She currently works with Bamboobee, a Singapore company designing and producing bamboo bicycles.
Christl Li Christl’s long-standing passion for the environment saw her volunteering on organic farms in Japan and North America while studying at Columbia University. These experiences have enabled her to see how sustainable agricultural systems and food consumption habits can play a key role in tackling climate change. Christl believes that every individual can effect change within our communities through the power of example and persuasion. She is excited about meeting youths with a similar passion for the environment at COP20 and gaining insights to influence environmental practices in Singapore and beyond. Ultimately, Christl would also like to see market forces driving constructive change, with corporations actively championing the environmental cause in a commercially viable manner.
Putera Zenata Ignastia Soegiri Zen is an educator teaching Social Studies in a local school. He is active in the NGO sphere, recently co-leading an expedition to Riau, Indonesia to study the causes and impacts of plantation fires which have led to haze and widespread air pollution in the Southeast Asian region. Zen believes that each individual has a stake and responsibility to conserve the environment. He cannot stand for people’s justification of unsustainable behavior, especially from those who make the argument that one single person’s action cannot possibly make an impact. To Zen, youths have a great role to play in advocating pro-environmental initiatives, inform and empower others and steer global demand towards environmentally sustainable products.
Tham Siang Yu During her years of living abroad, Siang Yu witnessed the positive impact of actions by governments and local communities in dealing with climate change. She returns to Singapore feeling inspired to challenge Singaporeans to take action too. As a youth delegate, Siang Yu hopes to connect with international youths and exchange ideas on how to raise climate awareness, foster a sense of responsibility towards the environment and create a sustainable habitat for ourselves and future generations. Siang Yu has worked on farms in France, co-organized a waste management project in Thailand and continues to be involved in humanitarian work with Translator Without Borders. She hopes to have her own farm one day.
Past Youth Delegations to the UNFCCC COP Meetings
Logesh Logas is a 17-year-old with a keen interest in both biology, environmental conservation and how they are intertwined where climate change is concerned. Having seen the effects of climate change upset the delicate balance of ecology, she believes that even the smallest actions by both individuals and the government to reduce the causes and effects of climate change will go a long way and preserving both the endangered species of the Earth, and ourselves. The prospect of working with other youth of a similar mindset to achieve the same goal and bring about laws and legislation that can help save our planet drives her and provides her with endless energy and enthusiasm.
Tan Wen Yun Wen Yun’s enduring love affair with the environment and nature began during her childhood, influenced by her parents’ strong concern and views regarding environmental conservation, as well as their meticulous care for the potted plants at home. She strongly believes in the potential to integrate economic possibilities with environmental protection, and also how youths are key to shaping a better future for the environment. She enjoys working with similar-minded youth on environmental causes and hopes that in sharing her experience at COP16 she can inspire her peers to become more pro-active and motivated towards environmental change. Currently a Year 5 student in Raffles Institution, the avid Geography student enjoys music, reading and visual arts.
Judy Goh An avid explorer, Judy was first inspired as a child by the first full photograph of the Earth from space to embrace the environment. She is a third-year student at the Victoria Integrated Program with a passion for foreign policy, the sciences and geography, but strongly believes that legislation is only a fraction of the solution to climate change. As secretary-general in the organizing committee of the futuristic Victorian Model United Nations 2010, she pushed for vital issues geared towards sustainable development. At COP16 in Cancun, she hopes to drive real change from the bottom up to world leaders, representing the voices of the youth and the concerned next generation. When she’s not writing articles for local newspapers and blogs or sorting out recyclables at home, she dreams of discovering innovative breakthroughs in green technology, something she hopes to make a reality one day.
Teh Yi Ying Watching the 2007 Climate Change Conference from afar in Bali, Yiying felt something stir within her. 2 years later with the initial passion taking the form of a fiery conviction, Yiying is now proud to be the President of Victoria Junior College’s environmental club, Earthwatch. Knowing that revolutions always start with small steps, she goes meatless once a week, has stopped using styrofoam completely and encourages others to follow suit. She feels that climate change transcends into every area of society and is also a social issue, taking its toll on developing countries especially which she feels inclined to sympathise with. Yiying strongly believes that at the upcoming Climate Change Conference, youth will be empowered to be that voice for a voiceless Mother Earth. When she’s not running about saving the earth, Yiying likes to read, listen to indie music, and enjoy picnics with friends.
Leong Chia Jang Born in Europe, raised in Singapore, educated in Australia & USA, worked in Asia and the Middle East;Leong Chia Jang a.k.a. LJ is a water treatment engineer who is interested in investigating global “green technologies” that improve the quality of life without adverse impact on the environment.
Lee Zhe Yu Zhe Yu has been a passionate greenie (and humanitarian) since young. Concerned with the current ills of global (economic) development especially with regards to the massive inequity that exists in the world. Realizes that climate change is themost severe global issue affecting mankind andyearns to find solutions that will promote truesustainable development for all. Desires for a new age of multilateralism, internationalism and global citizenship to solve the many interrelated global problems ranging from biodiversity conservation to chronic poverty, over fishing, deforestation, hunger and fair trade.
Kenneth Wong Kenneth started volunteering since 13 years old. Since then, Kenneth has been actively champions the environmental cause, sharing best practices and engaging the views and participation of his peers,both in the local community and overseas. Kenneth was also selected as Singapore’s representative for the British Council East Asia Youth Delegation at the Copenhagen Climate Change Conference. With his previous experience fromCOP15/CMP5, Kenneth hope that this upcomingCOP16/CMP6 in Cancun, Mexico will be a moreengaging and fruitful experiences for him.For his contribution to the environmental conservation, Kenneth was awarded both the National Environment Agency Ecofriend Award 2010 and HSBC/NYAA Youth Environmental Award 2010.
Eleina Ailmchandani An undergraduate student, Eleina has interest in intercultural communications, social movements and rural development. An active volunteer, she has been involved in reconstructing tsunami affected areas in Aceh and has taken active part in several overseas projects dealing with education and development. Pumped up with the prospect of working with other youths at the Copenhagen Conference this year, she hopes to push for stronger legislation that will curb greenhouse gas emissions by bringing to the forefront the future of island nations and developing nations which will suffer the most with climate change.
Amira Karim A rainforest enthusiast and foreign policy geek, I am a keen advocate of the UNFCCC’s philosophy of “common but differentiated responsibilities.” I believe in seeking sensible solutions to climate change through creating common ground with the private sector, governments, youth and communities. My aim for attending the COP 15 conference is to garner deeper insights on the UNFCCC negotiation process, to foster meaningful dialogue between youth and other stakeholders and to expand my knowledge in climate change issues. I hope to carve out a career in the area of sustainable development. Also enjoy sailing, salsa dancing, shoestring travel and working on international development issues as a World Bank Youth Fellow.
Gabriel Teo Many 18 year olds have strong aspirations and interests in a diversified range of fields. I have mine too. Yet mine revolves around reshaping my fellow friends and peers into developing an interest and personal conviction in the aspect of climate change. Through this conference, I endeavour to develop a deeper insight into the climate change policies and impact a change on governmental determination. I hope to bring back these experiences in Copenhagen and share it amongst my friends, to enthuse them on this green movement.
Lee Zhe Yu Zhe Yu has been a passionate greenie (and humanitarian) since young. Concerned with the current ills of global (economic) development especially with regards to the massive inequity that exists in the world. Realizes that climate change is the most severe global issue affecting mankind and yearns to find solutions that will promote true sustainable development for all. Desires for a new age of multilateralism, internationalism and global citizenship to solve the many interrelated global problems ranging from biodiversity conservation to chronic poverty, overfishing, deforestation, hunger and fair trade.
Melissa Low Yu Xing Melissa majors in Geography and has a keen interest urban civility and sustainability. She took part in this year’s Universitas 21 Climate Change Adaptation Summer School Program held at the University of Queensland, Brisbane which involved youths from around the world engaging in climate change debate. She hopes to again work with passionate youths in Copenhagen and to achieve greater heights in climate awareness. Melissa hopes to make a difference with the support of fellow youths to push for climate action TODAY.
As a secondary school student, Hu Ching’s first introduction to climate change came from the movie – ‘An Inconvenient Truth’. Ever since, he has grown an avid interest in global environmental issues, and was chairman of his Junior College’s Earth Club, rallying friends and schoolmates together for his green crusade. His main interest lies in understanding and overcoming the economic and social inequalities that contribute to, and are amplified by environmental change.
Having attended regional conferences in Germany and Bali, Hu Ching believes that this delegation can be a model of leadership to the other Asian nations, bridge the gap between participatory nations of varying wealth, as well as relay key environmental messages back to fellow Singaporeans.
Hu Ching is currently reading Geography at the University of Oxford, and is organizing the inaugural Oxford Climate Forum 2010.
Loo Yong Ping
My creative journey started with the doodling in my school books, to my Mass Communication studies at Ngee Polytechnic, to the running of a Campus Television Station, to the creation of my T-shirt company, then onto becoming an Officer in the Army, to being put in charge of the National Day Parade website and am now pursuing a BA (Hons) in Graphic Media Design at the London College of Communication. I believe that a designer’s job is not just about making things look good, but to be the creative mind in the market place. Amongst my freelance work, personal projects and internships, I have strong beliefs in using my creative skills and knowledge to help the under represented and less fortunate. Also acting as an Asian Team Leader for Project Survival Media, I co-ordinate media teams in China, the Fiji Islands, Vietnam, Indonesia and Singapore in reporting from the front lines of the climate crisis. In my second year as an International Youth Delegate for the UNFCCC, I hope to use my creative abilities for the greater good. More about me + my work @ iampingpong.com
Eileen Lee A love for backpacking in developing countries, coupled with a keen interested in the feminization of poverty and food security, has led Eileen to realise how vulnerable the poor are to the effects of climate change. This has spurred the acquirement of relevant knowledge, resulting in much enthusiasm on the language and psychology of climate change. Being actively involved in volunteerism, Eileen wishes to spread the climate change message through grassroots activities. As a Political Science and Corporate Communications major, she will be putting her knowledge to use as a writer with the COP15 youth media team, G-1 Billion, and will be providing non-negotiations content to international media.