The National Environment Agency (NEA) has introduced Corrective Work Order (CWO) sessions to city areas for the first time from November 2022 to increase the visibility of the punishment.
The sessions were held at Chinatown and Tanjong Pagar areas on Nov. 15 and 17.
NEA is also looking to raise public awareness of CWO by putting up informative standees whenever a session is ongoing to deter litterbugs.
According to NEA, the number of tickets issued for littering per year has been decreasing from about 33,100 in 2017 to about 15,500 in 2021.
An average of 27,200 tickets for littering and high-rise littering were issued per year from 2017 to 2021.
Over the same period, the number of CWOs issued to offenders was about 10,200.
NEA added that littering occurs most frequently in neighbourhood centres, areas around hawker centres, MRT stations, and shopping malls.
Offenders are mostly men aged 18 to 35 years old.
Ground surveys showed that cigarette butts often top the list of littered items.
NEA officers will conduct targeted enforcement at littering hotspots, and at areas where large number of individuals congregate.
NEA's anti-littering enforcement regime takes strict enforcement action against offenders.
First-time offenders are fined S$300.
High-rise littering offenders are sent to court.
Offenders prosecuted in court may be issued a fine and sentenced to perform CWO.
Introduced in 1992, the CWO requires recalcitrant offenders to clean public areas for a minimum of three hours, up to a maximum of 12 hours.
This regime serves to increase recalcitrant offenders’ awareness of the impact of littering, as well as experience the difficulties faced by cleaners, NEA said.
Under the Environmental Public Health Act (EPHA) 1987, the maximum fine for a littering offence for the first court conviction is S$2,000.
For the second conviction, they are looking at a S$4,000 fine, and S$10,000 for the third and subsequent convictions.
Photos via NEA