Saturday, April 15, 2017

Singapore's Approach to Alternative Energy

Singapore is a small country with a total area of about 720 sq km but it's quite a powerhouse when it comes to harnesing its resources. The way it has emerged from a third world country to an economic superpower in a short span of 40-50 years is commendable.

So, what is Singapore's plan for harnessing renewable energy?

A lot of renewable energy is not really available here.

As per this source,

  • Commercial wind turbines operate at wind speeds of around above 4.5m/s but the average wind speed in Singapore is only about 2m/s.
  • Singapore’s relatively narrow tidal range and calm seas limit opportunities for commercial tidal power generation. Much of our sea space is also used for ports, anchorage and shipping lanes, which limit the application of ocean energy technologies.
  • Hydroelectric power cannot be harnessed, as Singapore does not have a river system with fast flowing water throughout the year.
  • We do not have geothermal energy sources.
  • Our small physical size (715.8 sq km), high population density and land scarcity limits our potential for sustainably-grown domestic biomass. It also constraints the safe deployment of nuclear power in Singapore

  • Singapore's high average annual solar irradiation of about 1,500 kWh/m2 makes solar photovoltaic (PV) a potential renewable energy option for Singapore. However, we face challenges to the use of solar energy in Singapore. We have limited available land for the large scale deployment of solar panels. In addition, the presence of high cloud cover across Singapore and urban shading poses challenges such as intermittency.

    Read the rest of the article here

    The adoption of solar PV systems in Singapore continued to accelerate in 2015. Grid-connected installed capacity of solar PV systems sharply increased from 26 MWac in 2014 to 46 MWac in 2015. This increase was driven by 305 new installations in 2015.

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