In an attempt to boost biodiversity, Singapore plans to plant one million trees by 2030.

A new 990-acre Sungei Buloh Park Network has been launched in northern Singapore to act as a refuelling site for migratory birds and is home to oriental hornbills, otters, saltwater crocodiles, and many other species since 90% of mangroves have been lost in Singapore.

Visitors can currently view the Sungei Buloh wetlands from boardwalks and watchtowers, however starting in 2022, the public will be able to watch migratory birds from hides situated near the Mandai mudflat. The public will also be able to tour the new coastal Lim Chua Kang Nature Park, where a historic 1910 colonial building at the end of a jetty is slated to become an education centre.

Trees play an important role in creating a livable environment, says NParks Conservation Group director Adrian Loo. ‘They serve as natural air filters, they reflect radiant heat and cool surfaces and [provide] ambient temperatures through shade and evapotranspiration; and help to mitigate the urban heat island effect and climate change’, he said. ‘Healthy forests also play a role in regulating the water cycle, slowing down floodwaters and cleaning the water that flows into waterways’.

The city also plans on more than doubling the amount of its ‘Nature Ways’, which aim to make the streets cooler and more aesthetically pleasing while replicating some of the habitat value of forests by planting trees, shrubs and ground cover along sidewalks.