The world is running out of sand. It seems counter-intuitive but the sand, besides air and water, is our most used commodity. The insatiable demand for this non-renewable resource has led to environmental impact where it’s mined and to mafias driving the lucrative business.
The global depletion of sand is driven by rapid urbanisation—especially in China and other parts of Asia—and land reclamation. Singapore, where Sim Chi Yin is from, is the world’s largest importer of sand per capita. It has reclaimed almost a quarter of its territory over the last 60 years.
The story of sand is, to Sim Chi Yin, that of the global income gap writ large: wealthy states buy up land from their poorer neighbours and move it to where they want it.
Work on this on-going project on this looming global problem includes mapping, research, and photography.