Saving Energy and Costs of District Cooling – the Singapore Experience

Air conditioning uses a large part of a city’s electricity. It makes up 40-50% of a typical commercial building and residential blocks. Therefore it needs to be a key area for policy makers seeking solutions for Climate Change. Rapid urbanization in particular is a megatrend that compels cities to seriously look at this. In a city, district cooling involves the centralization production of chilled water used for air conditioning. There are cost and precious space savings in terms of reduced redundancies and use of larger chillers. More importantly, with centralization, a stronger and larger engineering team can enable recurring Opex and energy savings. In the Cleantech industry, unlike many other solutions such as renewable energy, it is one of the very few energy saving solutions that requires less initial Capex and less Opex in recurring costs. In Singapore, the Marina Bay district cooling network is one of the world’s largest network. With an innovative Government regulatory framework and incentives to save energy, the network has shown to be one of the most energy efficient network in the world, achieving savings as much as 42%. The presentation would describe the Marina Bay experience – the outcomes of the implementation in terms of benefits. It will also cover the Government approach towards this particular implementation and discuss the trends in Singapore and the region.