29 July 2021
On 23 June 2021, the National Climate Change Secretariat (“NCCS”), Singapore Economic Development Board (“EDB”), Energy Market Authority (“EMA”), Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA), and Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS) jointly issued a press release announcing that Singapore will seek to partner with other countries to advance emerging low-carbon technological solutions, addressing challenges Singapore faces as an alternative energy disadvantaged country.
This follows on from the findings from two feasibility studies on low-carbon hydrogen and on carbon capture, utilisation, and storage (“CCUS”) technologies respectively. Developing and deploying low-carbon technological solutions will help Singapore in its effort to meet commitments and ambitions in climate action, as set out in the enhanced 2030 Nationally Determined Contribution and Long-Term Low-Emissions Development Strategy, and the Singapore Green Plan 2030.
The “Study of hydrogen imports and downstream applications for Singapore” was jointly commissioned by NCCS, EDB, and EMA, while the study on “Carbon capture, utilisation and storage (CCUS): Decarbonisation pathways for Singapore’s energy and chemicals sectors” was jointly commissioned by NCCS and EDB.
Both studies highlighted the pathways for low-carbon hydrogen and CCUS that could be relevant for Singapore, as well as highlighting the barriers to deployment that would need to be overcome. The studies garnered valuable stakeholder feedback from the industry and research community.
The press release set out the key findings of the two studies.
- “Study of hydrogen imports and downstream applications for Singapore”: The study notes that hydrogen has the potential to diversify Singapore’s fuel mix towards low-carbon options for electricity generation, heavy transportation and some industrial processes. However, given Singapore’s limited renewable energy resources, it would be challenging for Singapore to produce green hydrogen at scale using domestic green electricity. The study recommends that Singapore explore various supply pathways for price-competitive low-carbon hydrogen. More details can be found in Annex A of the press release.
- Study on “Carbon capture, storage, and utilisation: Decarbonisation pathways for Singapore’s energy and chemicals sectors”: The study identifies carbon dioxide emissions, mainly from power plants and industrial facilities, as something that could be captured and stored in suitable sub-surface geological formations or converted into useful products. For the latter, the study recommends, as some of the more promising pathways, (i) mineralisation, to use waste-based feedstock or natural minerals to produce aggregates for reclamation or structural and non-structural building use, and (ii) conversion to chemicals and synthetic fuels, such as kerosene and methanol, which have the potential to be used as fuel for aircraft and marine vessels. More details can be found in Annex B of the press release.
These findings will be used to inform existing research, development and demonstration (“RD&D”) efforts and to guide private sector consortiums on the deployment of low-carbon solutions and the development of the hydrogen supply chain. The press release notes that the Singapore Government welcomes more partnerships, and opportunities to pilot new technologies in sectors including maritime, aviation, mobility, industry and power sectors.
Singapore will also seek to collaborate with other countries on advancing emerging low-carbon technological solutions, including joint contributions to international regulations, standards and certification on these emerging technologies, and participation in joint RD&D and test-beds. To date, Singapore has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (“MOU”) with Australia on low-emissions technologies and an MOU with Chile on low-carbon hydrogen, and is actively in discussions with other like-minded countries.