Sarawak in big emission reduction drive by 2030
31 Oct 2022
Sarawak targets to reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions by 600,000 tonnes per annum by 2030. This will be achieved by electrifying the state’s mobility fleet, according to Sarawak Premier Tan Sri Abang Johari Tun Openg.
“In order to fulfil our commitment to lower carbon emissions and decrease our reliance on fossil fuel, Sarawak has ambitiously aligned our post-Covid 19 development strategy to expand on our initial strategic economic blueprint under the Sarawak Corridor of Renewable Energy launched in 2008.
“This was when we began to strategically harness hydropower potential for rapid economic growth. This transformed Sarawak’s energy landscape,” he added in a recent keynote address at the Singapore Energy Summit in conjunction with the Singapore International Energy Week (Oct 25).
With the operation of major hydroelectric dams, including Bakun and Murum, he said Sarawak’s energy generation mix had transitioned from 92% fossil fuels in 2010 to 70% hydropower by 2015, complemented by thermal resources for energy security.
State-owned utility company Sarawak Energy Bhd (SEB) currently has an installed capacity of up to 5,643MW, of which 3,452MW (comprising Bakun 2,400MW, Murum 944MW and Batang Ai dam 108MW) is from hydropower. Another 1,285MW from the Baleh hydro dam will be added to the installed capacity when the dam is expected to be commissioned by 2027.
Johari said detailed studies had identified Sarawak’s most prospective hydropower sites to 12 locations, with the potential to generate 8,000MW.
“The shift (to hydropower) has decarbonised our grid emission intensity by 72% between 2010 and 2020 and continues to drive our sustainable socio-economic growth in the present day.
“Our renewable hydropower will be among the main engines for achieving the climate goal of a transition from CO2-producing electricity generation to carbon-free generation,” said Johari.
He said the lower levelised cost of energy from renewable hydropower had also benefited Sarawak’s domestic, industrial and export customers by supplying them with affordable, reliable and sustainable energy.
SEB currently offered the lowest average unsubsidised tariffs in South-East Asia, and its electricity is primarily green.
“As Malaysia’s largest renewable energy producer, Sarawak can play a key role in accelerating the region’s energy transition by working together with our neighbours by sharing our resources.
“The Sarawak Growth Agenda supports a resilient and sustainable energy future for a common regional prosperity.
“The global movement towards decarbonisation and energy transition is particularly important for Asean, as even the best-case scenario still indicates that all of us will face the effects of climate change to some degree,” he added.
SEB has been exporting electricity to neighbouring West Kalimantan, Indonesia since 2016, and is currently supplying up to 300MW to the province.
SEB will next export electricity to Sabah Electricity Sdn Bhd upon targeted completion of the Sarawak-Sabah power interconnection project by May 2023. There are also plans to export electricity to oil-rich Brunei Darussalam.
Johari said by 2030, SEB targets to maintain at least a 60% renewable energy capacity mix, with renewable hydropower as its core.
Source: The Star