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Singapore Gunning for Cleantech, but Will Singapore LNG Market Make Life Difficult?

Singapore LNG Market

Can the battle between global solar power market and Singapore LNG Market ever stop being abrasive and start being cooperative? TechSci explores whether a mixture of conventional energy and renewables is the right formula.

 Singapore is a country that is taking its climate change responsibilities very seriously. The island has nearly quadrupled its solar capacity the in past three years, from 33.1MW peak (MWp) in 2014 to 129.8MWp in Q1 of this year. Singapore is right on track to reach its and even exceed its 350MWp target. TechSci Research looks at the some of the major factors, including the rapidly growing Singapore LNG Market, that may influence the Singapore cleantech market over the coming years.

Challenges on the Road Ahead

Cost remains one of the obstacles, experts have said, since larger rooftop systems tend to be more economical compared with smaller systems. But residential use may increase as the cost of solar panels is expected to drop further as more and more money is poured into research on boosting capacitance, reducing raw material usage and prices, and streamlining the economies of scale. However, the biggest challenge to the global solar power market comes not just from the high cost of installation and overheads, but actually from declining natural gas prices.

Natural gas prices have been declining for quite a while now given the huge inventory backlog. As per TechSci Research report “Singapore LNG Market Demand & Supply Analysis, 2011-2025”, Singapore LNG Market is projected to grow at a CAGR of over 10% during 2016-2025 given the declining LNG prices, strategic geographical location in Asia-Pacific and implementation of favourable government policies. Since there are many commonalities to the way in which solar energy and LNG is used, increasing demand of one will quite possibly imply decreasing demand for the other.

Solar and LNG: A Summary

While LNG and solar are both relatively clean fuels, solar undoubtedly is the cleaner form of the two. However, when considering large-scale plants, TechSci experts suggest that Singapore LNG Market is still highly preferable to global solar power market given that capital costs of setting up a solar plant can easily be over ten times the cost of setting up a gas plant. Therefore, the onus, according to the experts, should be on micro-generation, which the Singapore government seems to be looking at very carefully. Successful schemes such as the SolarNova scheme, where agencies such as the Housing Board provide rooftop space for firms to install panels and aggregate solar energy in return for discounted electricity rates, should be implemented on a nationwide basis. A supplementary role played by both the Singapore LNG Market and solar in the other’s propagation and stability, experts suggest, can be extremely useful in the long run.    

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