Green Circle: Meet Pamela Low
Hi Pamela! Tell us more about yourself and your sustainability journey.
Pamela: I graduated from National University of Singapore (NUS) with a Bachelor's in Economics and started @tingkats.sg after I returned from an exchange in Germany. Tingkats was founded to work with likeminded organisations and individuals for climate action. Living like a local in Germany - using my own reusable bag at the supermarkets, recycling and taking a module on Energy Law in the European Union, then coming home to Singapore, made me realise there was more to be done in Singapore and NUS to progress our climate policies and ambitions.
Hence, upon returning to NUS, I worked with the administrators on a series of initiatives to reduce waste on campus (Read more: http://news.nus.edu.sg/highlights/doing-away-disposables) - that was how my journey started.
Since then, I continue to work with community, businesses and policymakers for climate outcomes. My efforts were recognised and I was awarded the #OCBCCares for the Environment Fund, FASS Student Leadership Award, HSBC/NYAA Youth Leadership Award and Smith School Enterprise and the Environment Summer School scholarship.
That is really impressive work! Could you share with us what is on your plate these day?
P: I have been working on a few upcoming partnerships that I hope to share in the coming weeks! I am also working on the #TreeDotsEats initiative, where we reduce food loss by redistributing surplus food to households via a weekly "group buy".
Households get to shop surplus food at up to 80% off supermarket price AND reduce food loss! No better win-win than that.
Consider us sold! How can an eco-conscious consumer like us be part of the TreeDots movement? P: Join the TreeDots Community chat from the @thetreedot instagram page! From there, you can choose a collection point from over 10 locations islandwide to order your groceries from! The community are made out of likeminded supporters who want to reduce food loss and to benefit from the cost and food savings that are offered.
What are some other environmental considerations implemented while creating the TreeDots movement? P: We have implemented100% "Bring Your Own Bags" since we started and deliberately so! The TreeDots community brings their own reusable cooler bags, cooler boxes and even pails to collect their food - super supportive!
In your opinion, how can one stay woke in this era of a Climate Emergency?
P: We can keep ourselves updated with the science through reading literature, reliable news sites, documentaries and joining community events that are being organised! This allows us to equip ourselves with the knowledge we need to be empowered to take and inspire action beyond ourselves.
What are some little steps in your daily life you've implemented to live a more sustainable lifestyle?
P: One switch I made about 3 years back after I returned from my exchange in Germany was to cut out using aircon. I did not have to use A/C in Germany and coming home, although the temperature was higher, I challenged myself to live as is. I adapted quite quickly and enjoy the fan more now!
What is one advice you will tell your 18 year old self?
P: Keep going!
Fun fact: I was not accepted by my Junior College's Earth Club at 17. At 14, I developed an interest in sustainability after going for a recycling event with family friends at Tzu Chi Buddhist Foundation. I learnt that resources can have a second life and my family started our recycling bin when we returned home which we still keep today. I did not get to meet likeminded people through my existing social circles and was quite looking forward to joining the Earth Club in my JC then!
Some years down the road when I was 21, I joined Singapore Youth for Climate Action's Learning and Leadership program at a whim from a sponsored post on Facebook! That opened a whole new world for me as I met likeminded peers and mentors. Two years ago, I was invited back to my JC to give a talk on climate advocacy to my peers, and my teachers had no idea how anyone could not be accepted by the Earth Club... So that was funny and I would say to my 18 year old self to continue pursing my interest.
Here's what we are curious about. Describe your style in two words.
P: Comfortable, casual.
What is a quote you live by.
P: "Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it's the only thing that ever has." - Margaret Mead