Energy efficiency measures provide the economic benefits of lowering energy costs to individuals and businesses while reducing carbon emissions. We are working with local companies to address some of the market barriers they face in adopting energy efficient practices and technologies.
Energy Conservation Act
Beginning in April 2013, energy users in the industry and transport sectors who consume more than 15 gigawatt-hours (or 54 terajoules) of energy per year must observe the following guidelines:
- Appoint an energy manager
- Monitor and report energy usage and greenhouse emissions
- Submit plans for energy efficiency improvements to the appropriate agencies
Since the enactment of the Act, energy savings have been realised and annual energy efficiency has improved over each year.
To further drive energy efficiency improvements in the industry, the following new requirements will be introduced over the next few years:
- Adopt a structured Energy Management System by 2021 or 2022 (depending on the facility’s energy consumption)
- Conduct regular energy efficiency opportunities assessments and submit first assessment by 2021
- New industrial facilities and major expansion projects to undergo design reviews to incorporate energy efficiency measures from 2018
Through the legislation of mandates for large energy consumers, Singapore aims to promote a coordinated approach to energy efficiency that will help companies identify and address inefficiency gaps within their organisations. Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards (MEES) have been introduced to phase out the least efficient industrial electric motors in 2018 and chilled water systems in 2020.
Energy Efficiency Fund (E2F)
The Energy Efficiency Fund (E2F) supports a wide range of energy efficiency efforts in the industrial sector:
- Resource efficient design – Co-funding of up to 50 per cent on consultancy fees (capped at $600,000 per project)
- Energy assessment – Co-funding of up to 50 per cent of the costs of energy audits (capped at $200,000 per project)
- Energy efficient equipment or technologies – Co-funding of up to 30 per cent of the investment cost of energy efficient equipment or technologies
- Energy Management Information System – Co-funding of up to 50 per cent of implementing EMIS (capped at $250,000 per energy-intensive facility or $125,000 per project for other facilities)
- Low-GWP Refrigerants Chillers – Support for adoption of water-cooled chillers using low-GWP refrigerants
Apart from grants, tax incentive schemes such as the Accelerated Depreciation Allowance Scheme allows the early write-off or depreciation of capital expenditure on energy efficient or energy-saving equipment to replace older, more energy-consuming ones. The Investment Allowance – Energy Efficiency Scheme (IA) allows an additional 30 per cent investment allowance for energy efficiency investments against taxable income, on top of normal capital allowances.
Development of Expertise in Singapore to Drive Energy Efficiency Improvements
Specialised skills are needed to measure and benchmark current system performance accurately, analyse data to identify opportunities and design a holistic plan to realise system efficiency gains. Current schemes, such as the Energy Services Company (ESCO) Accreditation Scheme and the Singapore Certified Energy Manager (SCEM) Programme help grow technical and professional capabilities in Singapore.
Participants attending a SCEM programme. (Image courtesy of the National Environment Agency)
ESCO Accreditation Scheme
Created to encourage the growth of ESCOs and enhance their professionalism and quality of services, the Accreditation Scheme establishes a nationally recognised Register of Accredited ESCOs. This scheme is jointly administered by the National Environment Agency (NEA) and the Building and Construction Authority (BCA). ESCOs help companies identify and realise opportunities to improve energy efficiency. Their trained professionals play an important role in supporting companies that do not possess the internal capabilities to achieve these efficiency gains on their own.
This programme was initiated to help engineering professionals develop the technical skills and competencies needed to lead energy services and management work in their organisations. It is jointly administered by NEA and the Institution of Engineers Singapore (IES). To encourage professionals to upgrade their skills, the Employment and Employability Institute (e2i) offers a training grant to co-fund about 70 per cent of the cost of the SCEM training course.
Energy Efficiency National Partnership Programme (EENP)
The Energy Efficiency National Partnership Programme (EENP) is a voluntary programme launched by NEA, EDB and EMA in Apr 2010 to foster a culture of sustained energy efficiency improvement in industry.
The programme comprises a learning network which provides opportunities for companies in the industrial sector to learn about energy efficiency ideas, technologies, practices, standards and case studies, as well as the EENP Awards which recognises the efforts and achievements of corporations and teams for excellent energy management practices.