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Sri Lanka and Singapore explore exchanging of renewable energy

By: Staff Writer Colombo (LNW): Sri Lanka and Singapore explore the possibility of transmitting Solar and Wind energy between the two countries. President Ranil Wickremasinghe during his recent visit to Singapore has held discussions with Singaporean authorities’ on ways and means to connect Singapore power grid with solar and wind energy generated by proposed projects in the North and East Presidential Chief of Staff Sagala ratnayake has been entrusted with the task of carrying forward these discussions with Singaporean authorities on the direction of the President. Sri Lanka could develop between 500 to 1000 MegaWatts of offshore wind power if risks to private investors could be reduced and the grid is upgraded to absorb the power, a statement by the energy ministry said. Sri Lanka has good conditions for offshore wind, with the most of the more than 50 GigaWatts of potential being held in the western and southern coasts, according to a roadmap developed with the World Bank and International Finance Corporation. “However, the roadmap analysis found that not all of this potential will be developed due to practical and cost limitations,” the statement said. Under a low growth scenario Sri Lanka could install 500MW of offshore wind capacity by 2030, contributing 5 percent of the country’s power generation capacity. By 2040, the installed capacity could grow to 1000MW and then to 2000MW 2050. Under a high growth scenario, the roadmap envisages deployment of 1000MW of offshore wind installed capacity by 2030. By 2040, the installed capacity could grow to 2500MW and then to 4000MW by 2050. There are technical and other risks to developing off-shore wind, including grid stability. Off shore wind is also generally more expensive than on-shore wind. Sri Lanka’s Windforce was recently given the go ahead to build the first power plant which reduces ramping. “Sri Lanka aims to have 70 percent of our electricity generated from renewable sources by 2030, and achieve carbon neutrality by 2050,” Energy Minister Kanchana Wijesekera said in the statement A 500MW offshore wind capacity could reduce up to 2 million tonnes of carbon dioxide a year and 1000MW could avoid 1 million tonnes of annual carbon dioxide emissions. The World Bank Group was providing assistance to the government in planning and implementing de-risking measures, including further site investigations, environmental and social scoping, wind resource assessment, legal and regulatory analysis, further stakeholder consultations, and policy support. “Over the lifetime of a 500 MW offshore wind farm, the Sri Lankan economy could benefit from over US$570 million of gross value added,” Asela Dissanayake, Acting Country Manager, Sri Lanka, World Bank said.

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