Winner of the E-Generation Challenge

CDL Sustainability - E-Generation Challenge Competition

City Developments Limited was proud to announce the winners of this year's E-Generation Challenge.

Anna Oposa & Sam Shu Qin

This annual competition was open to all Singaporeans, PRs and ASEAN citizens between 18-25 years old for the youth category and 26-35 years old for the young adults category. They sought participants who possessed a strong passion for the environment and had demonstrated abilities as change-makers with at least a 3-year track record in practicing and/or advocating environmental conservation.

2 winners were selected to join the Elysium - Heart of the Coral Triangle expedition as part of the Elysium team.

Anna Oposa from Philippines and Sam Shu Qin from Singapore were both selected for their outstanding applications and their passion for environmental advocacy.

To enter the competition participants were asked to enter a 3,000-word essay on solutions on either of the following themes:

       o Coral reef conservation in Singapore and the Region

       o Reduction in plastic waste by individuals and organisations

They also had to include a comprehensive publicity and social media plan on if selected as a winner how they would share their experience after the expedition to a larger community and provide an estimated outreach.

10 Finalists were selected to conduct a presentation in front of a judging panel of experts in their relevant fields.

To find out more about E-Generation Challenge head to


Announcing the Official Pin


D Day - 7: Today we revealed the official pin and badge of the Elysium Heart of the Coral Triangle expedition. It features an Andy Warhol inspired Pygmy seahorse design representing the colours and diversity of Raja Ampat. All 50 expedition members will receive this special pin but only 10 people will be lucky enough to own the entire collection having participated in all 3 Elysium expeditions .

Science Objectives – the Heart of the Coral Triangle Expedition

Science Objectives – the Heart of the Coral Triangle Expedition

1.    Baseline documentation of 15 selected sites ( five sites per vessel)
a)    transect survey of live coral coverage
b)    number of hard coral species
c)    number of soft coral species
d)    number of ornamental fish species

2.    Sea surface sampling of micro plastic at nine sites – three sites per vessel
During the expedition we will deploy a manta net from the side of each using a spinnaker boom, lines and karabiners set up.

3.    Blue and black water survey – five sites per vessel
During the expedition, we will be conducting blue water (day) and black water (night) documentation of species found in this zone. We will conduct sampling and photographic documentation of species in open-ocean environs.

4.    Fish Biomass Survey – five sites per vessel
These surveys are carried out using an underwater visual census method; buddy teams will lay out 30m transect tapes and then swim along them identifying relevant fish observed within 2m on either side of the tape. Each fish is identified to the species level and its length is recorded. After each transect, the team will conduct a roving survey. This involves identifying any species of grouper, jacks, butterflyfishes, snapper or sweetlips that can be seen whilst swimming along for a set distance. These methods enable an understanding of the abundance and biomass of selected fish species at each surveyed site.

5.    Manta Habitats
Mantas are found in at least five known sites within the expedition route. Our aim is to build a representative picture of these cleaning station environments. Research shall focus on fish speciation and biomass, coral coverage, and impact from marine tourism.  

6.    Mangrove Habitats – two sites per vessel
Our surveys at these sites focus on the health index of mangroves and the diversity of fish and coral species. Buddy teams will conduct visual and photographic documentation across 100m transects.

7.    Whale Sharks
Whale sharks are found in at least two known locations within the expedition route. Our aim is to conduct a 24-hour observation to grasp a better understanding of the species and their behaviour in these two locations.  

8.    Assessment – damaged reefs
The expedition comprises of both aerial and underwater photographic and visual survey of reefs affected by illegal fishing methods and warm temperatures.

1.    A Report Card of the health of the reefs in the Birds Head Peninsula.  
2.    Images and research procured from the expedition will be assembled to produce a limited edition photographic book, video documentaries, and photographic index.
3.    A series of exhibitions worldwide from April 2019

Meet Charlotte Young



Introducing Charlotte Young one of our young scientists of the Elysium Team. A passionate advocate for our oceans, she has been selected as a key team member of Elysium Heart of the Coral Triangle Expedition heading up the plastic team. Her enthusiam and thorough preparation for the expedition has been exceptional. Putting together the MicroPlastic Protocol and coordinating the procurement of equipment required she will oversee the plastic team on each of the 3 vessels.  With a briefing meeting amongst Team members on 29th before departure everything should be in place and we can't wait to see the results start coming in as the expedition progresses 

Climate Change, Reefs and the Coral Triangle

Without action on climate change, coral reefs in the Coral Triangle will disappear by 2100, the ability of the region’s coastal environments to feed people will decline by 80%, and the livelihoods of around 100 million people will have been lost or severely impacted. More than 85% of reefs in the Coral Triangle are directly threatened by local human activities, substantially more than the global average of 60%.

Impacts of climate change in the Coral Triangle
Climate change in the Coral Triangle is already having  a big impact on coastal ecosystems by warming, acidifying and raising sea levels. Coral Triangle reefs have experienced severe mass coral bleaching and mortality events  as temperatures have periodically soared. The annual, maximum and minimum temperatures of the oceans surrounding the coastal areas of the Coral Triangle are warming significantly (0.09-0.12 °C per decade) and are projected to increase by 1-4 °C toward the end of this century. Increases of more than 2 °C will eliminate most coral-dominated reef systems.


Climate Change impacts overview:

1.    Coral Triangle seas will be warmer by 1-4 °C
2.    Acidic seas will drive reef collapse
3.    Longer and more intense floods and droughts
4.    Sea level rise of minimum of 1 metre
5.    More intense cyclones and typhoons
6.    More annual climate variability in the Coral Triangle


Important habitats under threat

Climate change is also threatening coastal mangroves within the Coral Triangle, which are highly sensitive to rising sea levels. A multitude of other changes are destabilising critically important ecosystems along the coasts. Stresses arising from climate change are also amplifying the impacts of local stresses, leading to an accelerated deterioration of coastal ecosystems.
While coastal ecosystems are facing enormous pressures from both local and global factors, many areas within ecological resilience are among the most likely to survive the challenging times ahead. High levels  of biodiversity, coupled with fast rates of growth and recovery, put many  Coral Triangle ecosystems in a favourable position to survive climate change. Some parts of the Coral Triangle may have inherently slower rates of change in sea temperature and acidity, representing a potential refuge in an otherwise rapidly changing world.

What needs to be Done

In 2016, the level of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere passed the 400 parts permillion level (ppm). Stabilising atmospheric carbon dioxide at or below 450 ppm is absolutely essential if Coral Triangle countries are to meet their objective of retaining coastal ecosystems and allowing people to prosper in the coastal areas of the Coral Triangle. However, climate changes in the Coral Triangle ecosystems are inevitable due to the lag effects of on coastal and marine systems and associated terrestrial habitats.

ELYSIUM Heart of the Coral Triangle aim to mitigate the effect of Climate Change on the Coral Triangle

DOWNLOAD full report by University of Queensland & WWF (link to PDF)