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ICA achieves energy savings at Woodlands, Tuas checkpoints

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Above: Solar photovoltaic panels on the roof of Woodlands Checkpoint. Both the Woodlands Checkpoint and Tuas Checkpoint had attained the BCA Green Mark (Platinum) Awards in 2018.

THE Immigration & Checkpoints Authority (ICA) is one of the three organisations recognised this year for best energy efficiency practices in the public sector category.

This award gives recognition to outstanding public sector agencies that have demonstrated exemplary commitment to adopting good energy efficiency practices and have been proactive in implementing energy efficiency improvement measures at their premises.

Both the Woodlands Checkpoint and Tuas Checkpoint had attained the BCA Green Mark (Platinum) Awards in 2018, which recognised ICA's continual efforts in contributing to Singapore's environmental sustainability. Both checkpoints had also attained PUB's Water Efficient Building Certification and SEC's Eco-office certification.

In a significant achievement, the various infrastructural projects for both land checkpoints would lead to annual energy savings of about 30 per cent and 50 per cent for Woodlands and Tuas checkpoints respectively, the ICA told The Business Times.

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Both the land checkpoints have implemented several measures to reduce energy consumption including: Retrofitting chiller plants at both Woodlands and Tuas checkpoints under the Guaranteed Energy Savings Performance (GESP) contracting model, which guarantees ICA a system efficiency of at least 0.601kW/RT and 0.612kW/RT respectively; progressively replacing all the existing non-LED lights with more energy efficient LED lights at both land checkpoints; and installing photovoltaic panels under the HDB's SolarNova leasing scheme.

These measures are part of ICA's energy efficiency improvement plan. Under the plan, ICA also seeks to educate its officers and external stakeholders on energy conservation.

All these efforts led to an annual energy savings of about 14 million kWh for both land checkpoints.

"ICA has been recognised for our efforts by adopting energy efficient features and renewable energy for our checkpoints. Both Woodlands and Tuas checkpoints have embarked on several infrastructural enhancements to improve our energy efficiency and achieve a healthy workplace for our officers through improvement works to our indoor environment. They include the retrofitting of high efficiency chiller plants under the Guaranteed Energy Savings Performance Contract, installation of solar photovoltaic panels on the roofs of both checkpoints, and the progressive replacement of energy efficient LED lights in the building premises," says the ICA.

As a public agency, ICA takes pride in contributing towards a greener and sustainable environment, it adds.

Woodlands and Tuas checkpoints formed a green champion committee and set performance targets to reduce energy consumption. The committee monitors the electrical consumption closely and explores energy savings designs for various infrastructure systems and services. The committee also takes a proactive approach to educate ICA officers and partner agencies at the checkpoints on energy conservation.

"For ICA, being energy efficient means consuming less resources while continuing to serve our operational requirement. For instance, the new chiller plant helps to significantly reduce the electrical consumption for Woodlands and Tuas checkpoints, while at the same time, travellers and officers at our checkpoints continue to enjoy a conducive environment," says the ICA.

"We also take a proactive approach to review the facilities and operating equipment that are installed in the checkpoints to ensure that they are energy efficient while meeting our operating requirements. These efforts not only contribute towards a green environment but also reduce the energy costs at both checkpoints."

Moving forward, ICA will have specialists and a technical team to oversee building and estate management, which will also have expertise in energy efficiency.

ICA says that it will be keen to share its experience and journey towards achieving the EENP Awards, BCA's Green Mark Platinum Awards and the various energy efficient initiatives with other agencies.

"Energy is a finite resource and it is important for all building owners to make that effort in creating energy efficient and environmentally friendly buildings to help conserve precious resources. ICA is able to contribute towards a greener and sustainable environment while ensuring that checkpoint operations are not affected," says the ICA.

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