CapitaLand, SP, Sembcorp to study use of integrated energy solutions to green data centres

The integrated energy solutions will potentially include a combination of solar photovoltaic, green hydrogen and energy storage amongst others.

SINGAPORE: CapitaLand, SP Group and Sembcorp Industries have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to jointly study the use of integrated energy solutions to power data centres, a news release said.

CapitaLand’s data centre is the first to pilot in Singapore under SP’s Energy Partnership Programme. The integrated energy solutions will potentially include a combination of solar photovoltaic, green hydrogen and energy storage amongst others.

These will be further enhanced with smart technologies to increase energy efficiency and effectiveness.

The study covered under the MOU will initially focus on developing solutions to power CapitaLand’s flagship data centre, 9 Tai Seng Drive with green energy. 9 Tai Seng Drive has been certified with the top rating of Green Mark Platinum for data centres by the Building and Construction Authority and Infocomm Media Development Authority.

The feasibility study results planned for the second half of 2021, would potentially be applicable to benefit other data centres in Singapore.

This initiative dovetails with CapitaLand’s 2030 Sustainability Master Plan to elevate its commitment to global sustainability.

Among CapitaLand’s 2030 sustainability targets unveiled on 1 October 2020, it aims to reduce its carbon emissions intensity by 78% by 2030, reduce its energy consumption intensity at its operating properties by 35% and increase its proportion of total electricity consumption from renewable sources by 35% by 2030.

CapitaLand also aims to green its entire global portfolio by 2030, including its data centres.

Mr Kelvin Fong, Managing Director, Data Centre, CapitaLand Group, said: “As a responsible company, CapitaLand is partnering SP and Sembcorp to further enhance the sustainability of our data centres to support the growth of a clean digital economy. The ability to leverage smart energy solutions and tap renewable energy sources at our data centres will extend CapitaLand’s competitive advantage within the data centre industry while meeting our commitments towards global sustainability. Besides powering our data centres with renewable energy, we aim to offer energy-efficient designs and facility operations at our data centres. CapitaLand remains committed to contribute to the environmental and social well-being of the communities we operate in.”

This collaboration between CapitaLand, SP and Sembcorp is the first under SP’s Energy Partnership Programme. The programme aims to help corporates meet their green ambitions and overcome energy-related business challenges using integrated energy solutions.

Leveraging SP’s technical expertise in smart energy solutions, research and testing will be undertaken at SP’s Concept Lab.

Corporates enjoy the benefits of researching and testing the viability of sustainable solutions before advancing to real-world applications.

Mr Chuah Kee Heng, Chief Executive Officer, Sustainable Energy Solutions, SP Group, said: “We are pleased to work with CapitaLand and Sembcorp to green CapitaLand’s data centres. Under SP Group’s Energy Partnership Programme, we provide expertise and a conducive environment to help corporates solve their energy challenges and contribute to a low carbon, smart energy Singapore.”

Sembcorp harnesses the power of collaboration As an integrated energy player across the utilities and energy value chain, Sembcorp brings expertise in providing urban sustainability solutions to energy-intensive businesses with customised combinations of solar energy, energy storage, sustainable energy retail and other innovative energy solutions.

One of the targeted outcomes for Sembcorp in this partnership is to determine how green hydrogen fuel cell technologies can be most efficiently deployed in Singapore to reduce the carbon footprint of data centres.

Mr Lim Yeow Keong, Senior Vice President, Singapore and Southeast Asia (Energy), Sembcorp Industries, said: “Sembcorp looks forward to this collaboration with CapitaLand and SP. A key goal of this project is to find the most efficient way to lower the carbon footprint of data centres without compromising their operational resilience. With growing demand for data centres, finding carbon-efficient solutions to power them is key to enable a sustainable future.”

CapitaLand’s joint study with SP and Sembcorp is another of its efforts to strengthen the use of renewable energy and reduce its carbon footprint. In collaboration with Sembcorp, over 21,000 solar panels were installed atop CapitaLand’s six industrial properties2 held under Ascendas Real Estate Investment Trust (Ascendas Reit) in Singapore in 2019.

It is the largest combined rooftop solar facility in Singapore by a real estate company. These solar farms can collectively generate around 10,292 megawatt hours of energy annually, equivalent to powering about 2,300 four-room HDB flats each year3. CapitaLand’s corporate offices in Singapore will be 100% powered by renewable energy.

Three of its corporate offices will be 100% powered by renewable energy by end 2020 through Renewable Energy Certificates from the clean energy generated atop these industrial properties.

The joint study is timely, given current trends in data network electricity use. According to a June 2020 report by the International Energy Agency, global data centre electricity demand in 2019 contributed close to one percent of global demand.

Demand for data services is expected to continue its exponential growth over the coming years, which in turn will lead to an accelerated growth in data centre loads.

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