Cutting costs with renewable energy

  • Nation
  • Thursday, 16 Oct 2014

PETALING JAYA: Consumers in certain sectors should use renewable energy to address cost issues, said Tenaga Nasional Bhd (TNB) corporate affairs and communications senior general manager Datuk Mohd Aminuddin Mohd Amin.

“Using renewable energy is environmentally friendly as it releases less carbon to the environment,” he said.

Mohd Aminuddin noted that resources such as gas, coal and distillates would eventually deplete, and the most progressive way was to use renewable energy.

He added that there are several options.

“Among them are solar photovoltaic, hydropower, solar hybrid and biogas, which will help produce clean energy and build a greener Malaysia,” said Mohd Aminuddin, who nonetheless acknowledged that the main challenge of renewable energy was high start-up costs.

“Renewable energy generation requires TNB to enhance our distribution system from only supplying power to the consumers to a more sophisticated network.

“In other words, with the implementation of the Feed-in-Tariff (FiT), our system is continuously being upgraded,” he said.

FiT is a mechanism to catalyse generation of renewable energy up to 30MW.

Under this mechanism, individuals and companies can install solar panels on their rooftops and sell the electricity generated to TNB according to rates set by the Sustainable Energy Development Authority (Seda), an agency under the Energy, Green Technology and Water Ministry.

“The FiT programme gives the perfect opportunity for consumers to produce their own electricity and helps to hedge against rising energy prices,” he said.

TNB has inked more than 3,500 agreements with individuals and companies with capacity of over 400MW.

Of these, 181MW is from solar photovoltaic, 26MW from biogas, 111MW from biomass and 109MW from (mini) hydro.

Mohd Aminuddin stressed that as at the end of February 2014, the country’s electricity generation was highly dependent on gas and coal, with a generation fuel mix of 56.2% and 37.5% respectively.

Nevertheless, he said TNB used high-efficient, low-carbon emission technology in its fossil fuel power plants like the coal-based ultra critical boiler turbine in Manjung, Perak.

“We are playing our role in reducing carbon intensity in tandem with Malaysia’s commitment to the Copenhagen Accord to reduce 40% of emission by the year 2020,” he added.

Mohd Aminuddin said TNB was also promoting renewable energy with numerous energy efficiency campaigns at schools, institutions and industries.

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