Sunday, April 14

Malaysia holds great opportunity for solar energy

Malaysia and other Southeast Asian nations have a lot of opportunities as a result of the shift toward renewable energy, particularly biofuels.

Gavin Towler, chief sustainability officer at Honeywell, stated that roughly 20 years ago, there was a compelling argument for using “more expensive energy” in developing nations.

The prevailing concept was to exploit accessible, low-cost energy to increase the standard of living.

Towler pointed out, however, that some of the renewable resources already in use are less expensive than non-renewable resources like fossil fuels, a type of energy that has been extensively used.

“What has happened is that when the scale of renewable power has grown, renewable energy resources like wind and solar have become cheaper than fossil fuels. So the previous argument does not apply anymore.

“It should be the other way around now. Why would you use expensive fossil fuels when you could be using cheaper renewable power.

“As the world moves towards renewables, particularly as it moves towards biofuels, it creates a lot of opportunities for countries in Southeast Asia,” he said at the Honeywell Global Sustainability Week here last week.

Due to its climate, Malaysia has good potential resources for renewable energy.

“Malaysia has very good resources for hydroelectricity, wind power, and solar power. Of course Malaysia and Indonesia have been big exporters of biofuels, so we can see that some of the countries that were rich in fossil resources could also be rich in renewables,” said Towler.

“Malaysia is great for solar, and it has a lovely climate, depending on where you are in the country. In Australia, you have to pay for people to brush the solar power because the sand blows on it and lowers its efficiency.

However, as for Malaysia, you can just put the solar power on the roof and you are bound to get good power,” he added.

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