Published on 14 May 2022

The Big Read in short: Amid higher electricity bills, going green means saving money too

First published online at TODAY

Each week, TODAY’s long-running Big Read series delves into the trends and issues that matter. This week, we look at how amid rising electricity costs, households can trim their electricity bills and be eco-friendly at the same time. This is a shortened version of the full feature, which can be found here.
On April 4, Second Minister for Trade and Industry Tan See Leng spoke in Parliament about mechanisms to help Singapore stabilise prices and ensure sufficient supply, such as a standby liquefied natural gas facility and requirements imposed on power generation companies.

They were introduced after "upstream production issues in Indonesia’s West Natuna gas field and gas pressure issues from South Sumatra in the fourth quarter of 2021 caused disruptions to our piped natural gas supplies," said Dr Tan, who is also Manpower Minister.

EMA has also modified market rules, allowing the agency to direct power generation companies to use gas from its standby facility, to manage the cost impact on consumers. 

However, experts said that the prices and impact on supply reinforce the need for Singapore to diversify its energy sources and improve its local production — which currently makes up just 5 per cent of the country’s energy supply.
Some households looking to cut their electricity bills without changing too much of their lifestyles can generate their own electricity via solar power, which is the main renewable energy option here. 

Professor Subodh Mhaisalkar, executive director of NTU’s Energy Research Institute, noted that solar panel technology has advanced over the years, reaching efficiencies of between 20 to 22 per cent. This efficiency refers to the amount of electricity generated from solar energy that falls on the panel. 

Solar panel installation companies told TODAY that they have seen increased interest in their services this year, with more homes looking to do their part for the environment while saving money.

Read the full article here.