Tuesday, 27 September 2016

Summary & Reader Response: Sustainability Efforts (Draft 2)

According to the “Sustainability Efforts” (n.d.) webpage taken from Gardens by the Bay (GBTB) website, heavy emphasis has been placed on achieving environmental sustainability. Firstly, GBTB uses their lake system to filter water naturally with aquatic plants. This system aims to promote the importance of clean water and how plants can play a significant role in our ecosystem. Also, the web page further explained the two conservatories which consume lesser energy due to the specially chosen glass, along with the incorporation of thermal stratification and “Combined Heat Power (CHP) steam turbine”. Some “Supertrees” in GBTB act as the exhaust air storage while others have solar cells to collect solar energy. I acknowledge the effort GBTB put in to reduce pollution and energy and agree that they followed closely to the environmental sustainability concept.

Environmental sustainability defines how we should be protecting our ecosystems and the sustainability of our natural resources (Mason, n.d.). Protecting our environment from any potential damage will be the key to this sustainability.

In my opinion, the lake system makes efficient use of the natural ecological processes. Instead of using other sophisticated technologies, they choose to use reed beds and aquatic plants for the water cleaning process. By using reed beds in the lake system, it requires minimal energy input and is also environmentally friendly (“Reed-Beds,”n.d.). In addition, the lake system provides the benefit of nutrients and pollution absorption by incorporating aquatic plants and reed beds. Nutrient pollution occurs when there is excess nitrogen and phosphorus in air and water (US Environmental Protection Agency [EPA], 2016). Too much of these two nutrients can lead to algal bloom, affecting the water quality. It may even cause serious impact on humans and the environment. This system of GBTB has proven their attempt to protect our ecosystem, following their main concept of environmental sustainability.

GBTB also came up with an energy-efficient solution by using the specially selected glass as the main material of the conservatories to reduce the heat, and uses horticultural waste to generate electricity on-site for the cooling system. This reduces their dependency on natural resources, such as fossil fuels. Using CHP requires lesser fuel to produce energy, which will result in the decrease of greenhouse gases emissions other possible air pollution (EPA, 2016). Greenhouse gas is one of the main causes of global warming and the change in climate. Therefore, it is essential to reduce the emissions of greenhouse gases. By doing so, GBTB has shown efforts in environmental sustainability. 

Furthermore, the photovoltaic cells on “Supertrees” absorb radiation from the sun and converts the energy into usable electricity to light themselves up. The world’s natural resources are depleting, but solar energy will last as long as the sun rises. This makes it a good alternative to generate electricity. Furthermore, this way of creating electricity does not create pollution or result in global warming. With the “Supertrees”, GBTB attempts to protect the sustainability of the natural resources and our environment as well.

To sum it up, GBTB proved that their systems and technologies were indeed upholding the environmental sustainability concept.


Mason, M. (n.d.). What Is Sustainability and Why Is It Important?. Retrieved September 24, 2016, from http://www.environmentalscience.org/sustainability

Shahan, Z. (2013). Advantages & Disadvantages Of Solar Power. Retrieved September 24, 2016, from https://cleantechnica.com/2013/10/08/advantages-disadvantages-solar-power/

Sustainability Efforts (n.d.). Retrieved September 19, 2016, from http://www.gardensbythebay.com.sg/en/the-gardens/about-us/sustainability.html

US Environmental Protection Agency. (2016). Combined Heat and Power (CHP) Partnership Share. Retrieved September 24, 2016, from https://www.epa.gov/chp/chp-benefits

US Environmental Protection Agency. (2016). Nutrient Pollution. Retrieved September 24, 2016, from https://www.epa.gov/nutrientpollution

Wall, A. (n.d.). Advantages and Disadvantages of Solar Energy. Retrieved September 24, 2016, from http://www.processindustryforum.com/hottopics/advantages-and-disadvantages-of-solar-energy

What are the advantages of using a reed-bed system? (n.d.). Retrieved September 24, 2016, from http://www.reedbeds.co.uk/page/what-are-the-advantages-of-using-a-reed-bed-system.php

Wednesday, 21 September 2016

3 Things to improve for the trimester!

1) Verb Tense Consistency
2) Verbose
3) Run On Sentence 

Summary & Reader Response: Sustainability Efforts (Draft 1)

In the “Sustainability Efforts” (2016) article, it included three key designs used in Gardens by the Bay to achieve Environmental sustainability namely the lake system, conservatories and “Supertrees”.

The lake system mainly uses aquatic plants to filter and cleanse water naturally. The water is used in their irrigation system and to provide habitats with great air and water circulation for the fishes and dragonflies. Aquatic plants are able to improve water quality by absorbing nitrogen to help minimize the growth of algae. They also act as a control for problems like mosquito breeding. This system aims to promote the importance of clean water and how plants can play a significant role in our ecosystem.

The two conservatories, which replicate the cool-dry and cool-moist climate respectively, house huge varieties of uncommon plants. These conservatories could reduce energy consumption by 30% or more. The glass used for the conservatories allows plants to be exposed to light while keeping the heat level down, and the automated sails would shade the plants once the weather starts getting too hot. Thermal stratification is incorporated to cut down on the volume of air needed to be cooled. Along with the use of liquid desiccant, energy consumption would be greatly reduced. The “Combined Heat Power (CHP) steam turbine” uses agricultural waste to generate electricity on-site, allowing the gardens to be independent of the electrical grid.

Some of the “Supertrees” in Gardens by the Bay act as storage for the exhaust air while others have solar cells to collect the energy needed to light up those trees.

Global warming is one of the greatest issues the world faces therefore it is important to play a part in protecting our planet. The article shows that Gardens by the Bay followed closely to the environmental sustainability principle when designing their systems, allowing them to reduce pollution and energy consumption at the same time.


Sustainability Efforts (n.d.). Retrieved September 19, 2016, from http://www.gardensbythebay.com.sg/en/the-gardens/aboutus/sustainability.html

Wednesday, 14 September 2016

Formal Email

To: Brad Blackstone
From: Lee Xuan Hui
Date: 13 September 2016
Subject: Self Introduction

Dear Mr Blackstone,

My name is Lee Xuan Hui, your student from Singapore Institute of Technology(SIT). You may not remember me from your seminar class so please allow me to introduce myself.

I am 23 years old this year and I hold a Diploma in Industrial and Operations Management from Republic Polytechnic. I enjoy playing sports and would often spend my weekends trying out different sports with my friends.

I am currently undertaking a degree in Sustainable Infrastructure Engineering (Land). Out of the many Engineering courses, I chose to enroll myself into this course because I noticed the growing potential in the Land Transport Industry and I am looking forward to put what I learned into practice in the future.

My sincere thanks for your time and I hope this would help you know me better. I look forward to your up-coming classes.

Warm Regards,

Derrick Lee Xuan Hui


Commented on:
  • Alcina’s Formal Email on 18 September 2016
  • Iskandar’s English Language Journey on 18 September 2016
  • Calvin’s English Language Journey on 18 September 2016

Tuesday, 13 September 2016

My English Language Learning Journey

I grew up in a Mandarin-speaking family, and since young, my parents emphasized on the importance of Mandarin, which actually caused me to neglect my English skills. All along I thought that it was alright to speak broken English, as long as my friends understood what I was saying. However, I felt rather embarrassed when I realised that most of my classmates in secondary school were able to hold proper conversations in English. Furthermore, they often used vocabularies that I have never heard of, which made it difficult for me to understand them.

Since then, I decided to put in more effort during English lessons, particularly in my grammar. Without a basic foundation, I faced many challenges. For example, I often mixed up the past and present tenses as well as singular and plural. I even pronounced “soup” as “soap” once. Due to the lack of confidence, I seldom spoke English in public. However, I came to realize that the only way to improve myself was to use English more frequently. 

Hence, I plucked up my courage to converse in English more often. My friends around me seemed to noticed my improvements subsequently, and I also started to have more confidence in myself. Every time I made a phrasing or grammar mistake, my friends would make an effort to correct me. That allowed me to learn much more than what I can in class. Even up till now, I do not get offended when people correct my English. I am glad that they do so because there will always be room for improvement.

In my opinion, being able to converse fluently in English is an essential skill in life. I may still make a few grammar mistakes here and there, but now I have the confidence to strike a conversation with a stranger in English.

(Amended on 8 October 2016, 10.03pm)

Wednesday, 7 September 2016

Hi Guys!

Thanks for dropping by and I hope you will enjoy my post.