JOHOR’S Southern University College (Southern UC) signed a solar agreement with a private company which is expected to save the non-profit higher education institute some RM5mil in electricity bills over the next 20 years.
Southern UC board of directors chairman Datuk Vincent Tan said the institute had been talking about switching to solar power since 2018 and went through a highly competitive process of discussions, inspection and vetting to choose a suitable partner.
He said the university college finally signed a 20-year solar power purchase agreement (PPA) with Ditrolic Energy Solution Sdn Bhd, and this will kick off soon.
“The generation of electricity using solar power provides a wide range of benefits as it uses inexpensive and low-carbon technology to harness renewable energy from the sun.
“Many enterprises have enjoyed such benefits after making the switch, he said.
“Solar power is one of the cleanest energy resources with the advantages of being universal, harmless and long-lasting, not to mention its positive effects on environmental protection and carbon reduction.
“Moreover, Malaysia’s year-round tropical weather is definitely ideal for this move.”
Tan also said that the PPA would see the installation of photovoltaic solar systems on the rooftop of Southern UC’s main building and four student dormitories, as well as the construction of a roof structure for its existing basketball courts.
Two solar panels would then be installed above the basketball courts.
He also believes that the installation of solar power stations would not only benefit Southern UC in the long run but would also help to reduce environmental pollution within the Skudai community.
“Under this project, we expect to save up to RM5mil in electricity bills over the next two decades, which is an annual savings of RM250,000 on average.
“The money saved will be used as development funds to upgrade our hardware and software facilities to provide a more conducive learning environment to our students.
“The sheltered basketball courts will also allow the students to enjoy their games regardless of the weather conditions,” he said, adding that he was confident about the win-win partnership.
He hoped that Ditrolic Energy Solution would be able to receive tax rebates from the government for this project too.
Meanwhile, Ditrolic Energy Solution chief executive officer Tham Chee Aun said they were grateful to the institute for the significant opportunity.
“Southern UC is the first private higher education institute in Johor to use solar energy and we are committed to assisting them in completing this landmark project,” he added.