EMA Launches Pilot Programme to Help Consumers Optimise Energy Consumption
24 Oct 2016
The Energy Market
Authority (EMA) today signed a Memorandum of Understanding with 16 partners for
a pilot programme to optimise energy consumption by managing their demand. This
pilot, known as Project OptiWatt, is about demand-side management (DSM). It was
announced by Minister for Trade and Industry (Industry) S Iswaran at the Singapore
International Energy Week 2016.
DSM, energy consumption can be shifted from peak to non-peak hours. This
reduces the maximum load that the energy system needs to cater to, yielding
system-wide benefits. Based on a study by Professor Frank A. Wolak,
Director of the Program on Energy and Sustainable Development in Stanford
University, every megawatt reduction of peak demand in Singapore could
translate to system-wide savings of about $1.6 million.
objective of Project OptiWatt is to test the viability of DSM initiatives. This
includes looking into relevant technologies and business models, as well as
understanding consumer behaviour. The project partners comprise Institutes of
Higher Learning (IHLs), government agencies, companies, electricity retailers,
research institutions and the electricity grid operator. See ANNEX for the list
4. These partners will explore ways to adjust
their energy consumption patterns to reduce the burden on the energy system:
i) Institutes of Higher Learning
- Nanyang Polytechnic, Ngee Ann Polytechnic,
Temasek Polytechnic and the Institute of Technical Education will explore DSM
initiatives to better manage energy consumption on their campuses. The project
will also have an educational purpose: the learning points and relevant
research can be incorporated into the education curriculum for the students.
- Energy Research Institute @ Nanyang Technological University (ERI@N) and
ENGIE Lab Singapore have developed the PowerZee mobile app to reduce energy use
through user engagement and gamification. NTU’s eco-campus piloted the app with
1,850 students, who provided feedback on indoor temperatures to enable
real-time, data-driven air-conditioning adjustments. Students were also taught
"eco-gestures", enabling them to take an active role in direct
electricity savings. More of such innovative initiatives will be explored with
Project OptiWatt partners.
ii) Government agencies
- The Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) and JTC will
explore initiatives for shifting their electricity demand from peak to non-peak
- As an initial trial, A*STAR has successfully shifted about 0.3-0.4MW of
electricity load without affecting its operations. This was done by adjusting
the timing of its washers and sterilisers to operate outside the system peak
period (11am to 2pm).
iii) Companies and electricity retailers
- Electricity retailers Diamond Energy
Merchants Pte Ltd, Red Dot Power (formerly CPvT Energy Asia) Pte Ltd, and Seraya
Energy Pte Ltd will explore DSM initiatives with participating companies and
- Diamond Energy Merchants Pte Ltd will work with
participating companies on Demand Response and Interruptible Load programmes. Air Liquide
Singapore Pte Ltd, Applied Materials South East Asia Pte Ltd and Eltek Power
Pte Ltd have come on board to explore such opportunities to participate in the
- Red Dot Power (RDP) eResponse Program is an
incentive scheme that pays participating consumers to voluntarily reduce
electricity consumption during identified periods. A preliminary trial was conducted at Nanyang
Polytechnic (NYP) to explore how consumption can be reduced to respond to
real-time system conditions such as high prices or contingency events. The
trial found that the electricity load of chillers – amounting to about 7
percent of NYP’s total consumption – can be curtailed for up to half an hour
with minimal impact on the comfort level of users on the premises.
iv) Electricity grid operator
- SP PowerAssets Limited, a
subsidiary of Singapore Power, will explore how DSM technologies and
initiatives can be incorporated into the grid network planning process.
Reduction in peak demand can help to better manage the costs to expand the grid
network and resource needs such as land.
5. Mr Clarence Ti, Principal of Ngee Ann Polytechnic (NP),
shared that this will open up opportunities for IHLs to work with industry
experts to develop innovative ways and applications to optimise energy
consumption. He said: “It will certainly bring new impetus to NP’s ongoing
programme to reduce our electricity usage by 15 percent, and boost our efforts
in further engaging the campus community in sustainable practices.”
the announcement of Project OptiWatt, Mr Ng Wai Choong, Chief Executive of EMA,
said: "EMA is pleased to collaborate with our partners to optimise energy
consumption by proactively managing their energy demand. I look forward to the
success of Project OptiWatt in demonstrating the benefits of energy demand
management through consumer engagement."
- End -
 Consumers can receive a
share of the system-wide savings that result from demand response by reducing
their electricity consumption during periods of high energy prices.
 Consumers can be paid to
be on standby for their load to be shed in response to system contingency
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