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International Cooperation

EPA Collaboration with Singapore

Map of Singapore from CIA world fact book

Demonstrating Leadership in Environmental Protection

Singapore, a small nation of 700 square KM, plays a large role in environmental leadership in the region. EPA and Singapore are cooperating to enforce environmental laws, improve air quality, protect drinking water, and reduce exposure to toxic chemicals. This cooperation helps to implement the Memorandum of Intent Between the United States of America and the Republic of Singapore on Cooperation in Environmental Matters.

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Building Strong Institutions and Legal Structures

Singapore and EPA recognize the importance of effective enforcement of environmental law. In 2017, the Singapore National Environment Agency (NEA) participated in a regional inspections workshop hosted by EPA and EPA Taiwan. Course participants from Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam learned practical principles and skills for conducting environmental inspections.  

EPA and NEA are also active in the Asian Environmental Compliance and Enforcement Network (AECEN), which brings together enforcement officials from 13 countries to improve compliance with environmental laws and policies in Asia.

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Improving Air Quality for a Healthier Tomorrow

The U.S. and Singapore jointly deliver a training course on air quality and health in September 2016.

The World Health Organization estimates that urban air pollution caused 3.7 million deaths in 2012, over one-third of which were in Southeast Asia.  To raise awareness about the linkages between air quality and health, in 2015 and 2016 EPA was part of a joint U.S. and Singaporean team which trained Southeast Asian officials on tools to estimate the health impacts of poor air quality. Among the tools EPA shared during the training was BenMAP, an open-source computer program that calculates the number and economic value of air pollution-related deaths and illnesses. These courses were part of the U.S.-Singapore Third Country Training Programme.

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Expanding Access to Clean Water

EPA and Singapore PUB discuss stream monitoring techniques.

According to the United Nations, the Asia-Pacific region is home to 60% of the world’s population, but it has only 36% of its water resources. In Singapore, most of the water supply is either imported or reclaimed through methods like desalination. 

Since 2013, EPA and Singapore PUB (Singapore’s National Water Agency) have been supporting clean drinking water research in the U.S. and Singapore through collaboration and information exchange on topics such as water contamination detection, water reuse, and management of algal blooms. As part of this cooperation, in 2016, EPA partnered with ZWEEC (one of PUB’s private sector partners). EPA and ZWEEC are jointly assessing a new water monitoring technology that could quickly detect contamination in drinking water systems. 

EPA’s Principal Deputy Assistant Administrator for International and Tribal Affairs, Jane Nishida, spoke about water efficiency and reuse at the Water Leaders’ Summit during Singapore International Water Week in July 2018.
Photo Credit: U.S. Embassy Singapore
In July 2016, Singapore PUB and EPA developed and delivered a training course on water efficiency and wastewater management for Southeast Asian countries. Through this course, participants learned about tools and strategies to treat wastewater and control water loss. The course was part of the U.S.-Singapore Third Country Training Programme.

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Reducing Exposure to Toxic Chemicals 

EPA and Singapore are committed to working together to protect our communities from toxic chemicals. EPA is combining our computational and toxicological expertise with the biomedical research capabilities of Singapore’s Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR). In 2016, EPA partnered with A*STAR to develop and use new approaches to evaluate the safety of chemicals, with a focus on developing predictive models for kidney, liver, and developmental toxicity.  This collaboration aims to develop more efficient and economical ways to evaluate the potential health effects of chemicals to protect human health. 

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For additional information about EPA's work with Singapore, contact:
Team Chen
Office of International and Tribal Affairs (2650R)
1200 Pennsylvania Ave., NW
Washington, DC 20460
Phone: (202) 564-6600