Sabah launches roadmap for energy security and carbon neutrality plans

KOTA KINABALU: Sabah launched a 17-year energy roadmap that aims to meet its immediate power needs by 2030 as it transitions to become a carbon-neutral state.

Dubbed the Sabah Energy Roadmap and Master Plan 2040 (or SE-RAMP 2040), it aims to immediately ensure energy security for the state through short-term plans to mix its energy sources, as it is highly dependent on natural gas at present.

The roadmap also covers the development of renewable energy to meet the nation's carbon neutrality goals by 2050.

In launching the roadmap at Menara Kinabalu here on Tuesday (Sept 19), Chief Minister Datuk Seri Hajiji Noor said SE-RAMP 2040 would address near-term needs while building future long-term resilience of the energy industry.

It outlines the state’s direction and strategic initiatives in anticipation of the state government assuming regulatory powers for electricity and renewable energy supply from the Federal Government in January.

"The state government is committed to ensuring that SE-RAMP 2040 is implemented systematically and effectively," Hajiji said.

Under the masterplan, the Chief Minister will chair a Sabah Energy Council which will monitor, support and provide guidance on the implementation of the planned short-, medium- and long-term initiatives.

SE-RAMP 2040's objectives include ensuring dependable power supply with equal access and comprehensive coverage at an affordable price.

"It is also to complement the National Energy Policy launched last year, and the National Energy Transition Roadmap 2050 (NETR) launched in August this year," Hajiji added.

He said SE-RAMP 2040, formulated by the Energy Commission of Sabah (ECoS), covers various strategies and initiatives to balance the energy "trilemma" of security, affordability and environmental sustainability.

"We know and realise that the power supply issue in Sabah has been plaguing the people for so long. The government is committed to address this legacy issue and make every effort to resolve it.

"Furthermore, with the Hala Tuju Sabah Maju Jaya investor-friendly policy, basic infrastructure needs such as electricity and water supply remain a priority.

"This plan paves the way for us to ramp up electricity supply for industry needs," he said.

The Chief Minister said the state government had secured several high-impact investors such as copper coil manufacturer SK Nexilis, solar glass manufacturer Kibing, Linaco coconut integrated processing mill and green steel project Esteel.

With SE-RAMP 2040 in place, Sabah hopes to attract more investors to promote economic growth, create economic spillover while providing job opportunities for locals, he added.

ECoS chief executive officer Datuk Abdul Nasser Abdul Wahid said SE-RAMP 2040 will employ 16 strategies to address the issues of energy security, accessibility and sustainability.

The strategies include having a sufficient reserve margin in energy generation, utilising a diversified fuel mix, and deploying new energy sources and technologies.

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