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Jurong Island to serve as a 'living' test bed for sustainable technology

04:43 Min
Jurong Island will serve as a “living” test bed for sustainable solutions for the first time, as the industrial estate transforms into a sustainable energy and chemicals park. Clara Lee reports.
  • Two innovation calls announced to develop and testbed new sustainability solutions
  • This comes after a JTC-led study identified areas for greater collaboration and to reduce resource use
  • Study involved 51 companies including Chevron, ExxonMobil and Shell

SINGAPORE: Jurong Island will serve as a “living” test bed for sustainable solutions for the first time, as the industrial estate transforms into a sustainable energy and chemicals park.

Two innovation calls aimed at coming up with solutions to boost the circular economy and reduce carbon footprint were announced by JTC on Thursday (Aug 19). 

The first - Jurong Island Innovation Challenge - will crowdsource innovative ideas from startups and small- and medium-size enterprises (SMEs) to enhance the sustainability and circularity of resources.

According to JTC, the industry players such as Chevron Oronite, Shell and Singapore LNG Corporation will be participating in the call, and will come together to submit 10 challenge statements.

The challenge statements cover four key themes that will boost resource efficiency efforts: Energy efficiency, emissions reduction, water management and chemical waste management.

SMEs that put forth proposals will gain opportunities to work with large corporates and will also receive funding support for the development of their solutions, said JTC.

Under the enterprise track, qualifying startups and SMEs can tap on ESG’s Enterprise Development Grant, which can provide support for up to 80 per cent of the qualifying solution development costs.

For selected challenge statements, awarded solution providers will receive up to S$2 million in grant support under the National Innovation Challenge, for solution development and industry adoption.

“Through this innovation call, startups and SMEs will have the opportunity to showcase their capabilities in addressing real-world circularity challenges, and work with prominent industry players to develop and testbed solutions for wider deployment eventually,” said Mr Png Cheong Boon, Chief Executive Officer of ESG.

“We hope that such pilot projects help build up the track records of our startups and SMEs, and enable them to seize more opportunities in the green economy both locally and globally.”

The second innovation call is a request for proposals for energy solutions that can reduce the island’s carbon footprint.

Scheduled to be launched in October, the call will focus on test-bedding renewable energy and energy storage systems such as high-efficiency solar panels and solar deployment on pipe racks and storage tanks.

In addition to the innovation calls, JTC, Singapore LNG Corporation and other agencies will also embark on a new project to pursue the use of cold technology for the Jurong Island ecosystem.

If successful, it will enable cold energy to be harnessed efficiently from the SLNG terminal on Jurong Island and reduce its carbon footprint, said JTC.

"As Jurong Island transforms into a more sustainable energy and chemicals park, it can, and will, play a leading role in spurring game-changing technologies, making it more competitive and sustainable in the long term," said JTC CEO, Mr Tan Boon Khai.

The supplementary indirect seawater cooling facility by the Petrochemical Corporation of Singapore. (Photo: Petrochemical Corporation of Singapore)


The innovation calls come after a JTC-led circular economy study identified opportunities in the areas of clean energy use, water recycling and recovery, and the sustainable recovery and treatment of chemical waste.

Launched in 2019, the study involved 51 companies including Chevron, ExxonMobil and Shell. These companies shared data on energy, water and chemical waste, as well as identified potential synergies to reduce resource use at the system-level.

Among the key findings, the Jurong Island Circular Economy (JICE) study found that there was scope for greater collaboration in the use of cleaner energy and exploration of new technologies.

For instance, solar energy generation on the island can be scaled-up. To better optimise energy supply, an islandwide smart grid or network of smart grids can also be used to coordinate conventional and renewable energy generation.

Besides improving energy efficiency, pursuing cleaner energy technologies can also help to reduce the overall carbon footprint of the island and increase the clean energy mix of companies on Jurong Island.

The study also highlighted opportunities to improve water recycling and recovery as well as developing solutions for more sustainable waste recovery and treatment of chemical waste.

However, implementing such solutions comes with some challenges, as some technologies have not reached the level of maturity, or may be energy-intensive.

Speaking at the closing webinar of the study, Second Minister for Trade and Industry Tan See Leng said the innovation calls will help to better address these challenges.

“For our sustainability efforts to really take off, we need go much further. Our industries must transform and achieve breakthroughs in carbon and energy efficiency and we must also do more with what we have,” he said.

“Our hope is that the JICE study and innovation calls will help catalyse new ideas, underscore how our industrial estates can be a living testbed for new solutions that could serve as engines of growth for the future, and give new impetus for our energy and chemicals sector to enhance its competitiveness and produce sustainably for the world,” he added.

Source: CNA/vl(zl)