Solar leasing to reduce port emissions
In 2014, Singapore published its photovoltaic roadmap, which focused on fulfilling the technical potential for solar energy in Singapore and adopted ‘baseline’ and ‘accelerated’ scenarios for solar-driven C02 reductions.
Jurong Port is Singapore’s main port, and handles bulk, break-bulk, and containerised cargo. It welcomes more than 15,000 vessels each year.
Jurong port’s operations are energy-intensive. There was a need to reduce its emissions as part of Singapore’s Paris Agreement reduction targets, and to ensure Singapore remains attractive to transnational corporations that increasingly demand renewable energy for their operations.
Energy price volatility also threatened the operating costs of Jurong Port.
Jurong Port leased the rooftop of its warehouse building to Sunseap Leasing, which finances, installs, operates, and maintains solar panels on the warehouse at no cost to Jurong Port.
- Jurong Port purchased electricity from Sunseap Leasing through a fixed-price contract.
- Sunseap may sell excess electricity generated back into the grid.
- MPA Corporation Limited – The Maritime Port Authority is the main regulatory body overseeing ports in Singapore
- Jurong Port Pty Ltd – Responsible for the operations of the Jurong Port
- Sunseap Leasing – Major clean energy provider in Singapore, responsible for the financing and operating of solar panels
Results and impact
- Significant emissions reduction: Jurong Port has estimated the solar installation to reduce carbon emissions by up to 5,200 tonnes per year and provide more than 60% of its annual electricity requirements. At peak capacity, the facility will generate 9.5 megawatts.
- Cost savings for Jurong Port: The fixed-price solar energy supply contract provided cost certainty for Jurong and is forecast to save costs in the long term, as solar-generated power becomes cheaper than purchasing from the grid.
Key lessons learnt
- Traditionally energy-intensive industries can use private sector investment to significantly reduce their carbon footprints by realising the potential of their projects to generate renewable energy.
- Leasing models allow existing projects to secure lower-cost, long-term electricity contracts with low or no cost to the existing asset.
- Solar leasing projects require long-term commitment by existing asset owners to secure private sector investment, particularly due to the long break-even point for installers.