By: Rubina Obaid
Singapore is dedicatedly working to mitigate its carbon footprints while evolving the overall energy sector to improve its energy security without increasing the cost of electricity. Nevertheless, Singapore is aiming to increase its solar deployment and investing in research and development as well, to have an improved solar PV system.
Singapore is a small resource-constrained country that has no domestic fossil fuel resources. So, it imports all of its energy resources and gas through the existing pipelines from Malaysia and Indonesia as LNG that is liquefied natural gas. The import of LNG was initiated in 2013 and is expected to account for all gas imports by 2027. LNG is considered a better alternative to conventional fossil fuel energy and contributes little to the accumulation of carbon footprints. Thus, from an energy security perspective, it is a desirable improvement and the global LNG market is more resilient and flexible than pipeline gas.
With the very limited renewable alternatives available to Singapore, they were not able to generate sufficient baseload electricity from renewable sources. Singapore is dedicatedly working to mitigate its carbon footprints while evolving the overall energy sector to improve its energy security without increasing the cost of electricity. Nevertheless, Singapore is aiming to increase its solar deployment and investing in research and development as well, to have an improved solar PV system. Also, they are striving to discover innovative ways to integrate solar energy systems into the urban environment.
The Australia-ASEAN Power Link (AAPL) envisages to connect a 10GW solar photovoltaic (PV) farm and a 30 GWh battery storage facility in the northern territory of Australia, to Singapore. The implementation of the process will be done through a 4500Km high voltage direct current (HVDC) transmission system, of which 3750km will be transmitteed through a submarine cable. One of the leading companies in Singapore Sun Cable is the owner and the developer of the project. It involves the world’s largest solar PV farm, the world’s biggest battery storage facility, and the longest HVDC submarine cables. It is estimated that the project will dispatch the renewable energy to the Northern Territory to export the solar energy worth of A$2 billion per year.
Further, Singapore is also exploring the ways to strike into regional power grids for having green energy sources domestically and expanding the opportunities of solar photovoltaic development. To open new arenas of electricity alternatives and neutralizing potentially higher electricity cost and sustainability risks. As currently 95 percent of the electricity generation is being done through gas generators, the rest of the three percent is through waste and landfills and remaining from fossil fuels, which is the fraction of the entire number. The Sun Cable proposal seems to bring great prospects of success in the energy sector and the transition towards environmentally safe energy sources will be easier. Which will also help the country to mitigate greenhouse gas emission and reaching climate neutrality targets in the most cost-effective manner. However, in a broader context, Sun Cable revealed a range of obstacles that hindered the integration of electricity sectors in ASEAN countries for decades. As member ASEAN countries vary greatly in size, landscape, economic development, and national energy resources. Also, they have diverse domestic power development plans that clearly prioritizes domestic power generation differently.