Singapore

Chan Chun Sing: Next goal is for Singapore to diversify energy sources

This article is more than 12 months old

If the past 50 years have been about how Singapore has overcome water scarcity, the next 50 will be about how the country overcomes its energy challenges.

"Just like how Singapore has successfully diversified our supply of water over the years, our next ambitious goal is to enhance our energy resilience to ensure that we are never dependent on any single source of supply," said Minister for Trade and Industry Chan Chun Sing yesterday at the opening of Singapore International Energy Week at Marina Bay Sands.

To this end, the nation is investing in infrastructure, tapping green energy and acting as a test bed for innovative solutions.

He announced new projects and initiatives, from ramped-up solar production to greater support for the energy storage systems - essentially gigantic rechargeable batteries - that will enable Singapore to better use solar production.

The Energy Market Authority (EMA) will drive the development of energy storage systems, crucial for Singapore's success in harnessing renewable energy.

Solar power is the most promising renewable source, but a major drawback lies in unpredictable sunshine due to cloud cover. Despite this, the Republic hopes by 2025, solar power could support a quarter of national projected peak electricity demand.

Today, solar energy accounts for only about 2 per cent of the country's power supply.

EMA therefore announced yesterday two partnerships with PSA Corporation and Sembcorp Industries to help roll out energy storage systems on a commercial scale. It also launched a policy paper that it said would continuously evolve as the local energy storage systems landscape develops.

This will support the $17.8 million in grants announced at the 2017 energy week that went into testing which storage solutions would work best in Singapore's hot and humid climate.

Leading the push for solar energy, JTC will expand its solar generation capacity by 100 times through its SolarRoof and SolarLand initiatives.

From a total installed capacity of 1megawatt-peak (MWp) today - enough power for 250 four-room Housing Board flats for a year - the government agency aims to achieve 100MWp by 2030.

Mr Chan added: "With better production, management and consumption of energy, we can ensure a high quality of life and a vibrant economy for our people through greater access to cleaner, more affordable and more reliable energy."

ELECTRICITY & POWER