Budget debate: Manufacturing firms and SMEs can receive more funding to adopt energy-efficient tech

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SINGAPORE – Manufacturing firms, together with small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), will from April get more funding help beneath an present scheme to purchase and adopt energy-efficient applied sciences.

Minister for Sustainability and the Environment Grace Fu gave this replace in Parliament on Tuesday (March 8), saying that the enhancements to the Energy Efficiency Fund (E2F) will assist such firms cut back their emissions and lower their utilities payments.

The grant cap for the energy-efficient applied sciences part of the fund will from April 1 be raised from 50 per cent to 70 per cent, stated Ms Fu.

Such applied sciences embody high-efficient air-conditioning methods, LED lighting and more environment friendly boiler methods.

The larger co-funding of up to 70 per cent will assist to cowl the price of expertise and tools, in addition to exterior manpower and skilled companies, stated the National Environment Agency (NEA) in a press release.

The company launched the Energy Efficiency Fund in 2017 to assist firms within the industrial sector, together with SMEs, enhance their vitality effectivity.

Under the improved funding scheme, tasks that obtain larger carbon abatements can receive more grants.

Speaking throughout a parliamentary session at which numerous ministries fleshed out their inexperienced initiatives, Ms Fu stated that whereas many SMEs are nimble, dynamic and inventive, they usually lack assets to put money into energy-efficient applied sciences or to make adjustments to their companies.

“Improving energy efficiency is one of the primary ways that businesses can lower their carbon emission. We will provide targeted support to help every sector decarbonise,” she added.

Adopting energy-efficient applied sciences may even assist the manufacturing sector handle the impacts of a better carbon tax.

Last month’s Budget introduced that the carbon tax could be raised from the present $5 a tonne of emissions to between $50 and $80 by 2030.

As at January this yr, the Energy Efficiency Fund has supported 27 expertise tasks, which have slashed carbon emissions by round 1,600 tonnes a yr – which is equal to taking about 500 vehicles off the highway, stated NEA.

Ms Fu added that more than $75 million has been used to assist companies implement vitality effectivity and carbon abatement tasks.

In her deal with, she cited how an area metal manufacturing firm, Kawarin Enterprise, has benefited from the fund by upgrading its previous air compressors to more energy-efficient ones.

“It enjoyed annual cost savings of more than $30,000, and abated about 48 tonnes of carbon annually,” she added.

Ms Fu urged firms to benefit from the improved funding assist early.

NEA additionally stated the grant utility and disbursement course of for the Energy Efficiency Fund will probably be simplified from April 1 to assist candidates save time and value.

For occasion, the method of measuring and verifying the quantity of vitality financial savings for every challenge will probably be streamlined.

Companies which are beginning vitality effectivity tasks can take up assessments supplied by the Energy Efficiency Technology Centre – an present initiative by NEA and the Singapore Institute of Technology.

The centre’s vitality assessments assist firms discover strategies they can put money into to enhance their vitality effectivity.

The centre additionally trains engineering college students in industrial vitality effectivity, and helps to upskill present staff on this subject.

To additional increase the centre’s instructing capabilities, a brand new coaching and simulation facility will probably be arrange on the centre to permit learners to practise their abilities in a sensible atmosphere, stated Ms Fu.

More particulars will probably be introduced later.

“With the enhancements, the centre will be able to assume a more prominent role in Singapore’s transition to a low-carbon economy,” she added.

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