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THE Housing & Development Board, or HDB, has called for the first multi-agency solar leasing tender, which at 40 megawatt-peak (MWp) capacity, is the largest to date in both the public and private sectors of Singapore.
The tender, which closes on Aug 14, and is expected to be awarded in the fourth quarter of this year, will see solar photovoltaic (PV) systems installed at eight Ministry of Home Affairs and Public Utilities Board sites, as well as at an estimated 900 HDB blocks across the city-state, HDB and the Singapore Economic Development Board (EDB) said in a joint statement on Friday.
Under a solar leasing programme, the solar PVs are installed and owned by a third party, while the user pays for the solar power generated and consumed at a preferential rate to retail electricity tariffs.
For the Ministry of Home Affairs, the solar PV systems will be installed at the Tuas Checkpoint, the Woodlands Checkpoint, the Home Team Academy, the Airport Police Division as well as the Ministry of Home Affairs' headquarters at Phoenix Park. And for the Public Utilities Board, the solar PVs will be installed at the Changi Water Reclamation Plant, the Bedok Waterworks as well as the WaterHub. The installations are expected to be completed in end-2017.
This is the first tender called under the government-led solar demand programme, SolarNova, which is spearheaded by the EDB. Under this programme, the EDB encourages government agencies to group together to use solar energy to power their activities, and aims to have solar power contribute 350 MWp to Singapore's energy system by 2020, which is equivalent to 5 per cent of Singapore's peak energy consumption.
More tenders under SolarNova will be called over the next four to five years, the joint statement read.
In October last year, of seven tenderers, HDB had awarded a 38MWp solar leasing tender to Singapore's largest solar leasing company Sunseap Leasing. Excluding the latest tender, HDB has procured a total of about 55 MWp of solar energy.
By month's end, about 250 HDB blocks in Singapore will have solar panels, with installation works in progress for another 772 blocks, according to both agencies, which added that with the latest tender, a total of some 2,000 HDB blocks will soon harness solar energy.
When contacted by BT, both Sunseap and solar energy provider REC Solar indicated interest to participate in HDB's latest tender.