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Engineering Eco-Friendly Solutions
A new S$61-million research laboratory has been set up to look into ways to optimise land usage, come up with eco-friendly solutions for buildings and improve productivity in the built environment sector. Launched in August 2018 by the Nanyang Technological University (NTU), Surbana Jurong (SJ) and NRF, the SJ- NTU Corporate Lab is starting with 11 projects focused on three themes - digitalisation, sustainability and future-proo ng the built environment industry. Among them are chilled ceiling panels suited to the tropics, which can reduce the amount of energy needed to cool a room while removing impurities; and better ways to store lique ed natural gas - the main energy source here - in industrial and urban areas so that the space above ground can be freed up for other uses.
Successful solutions developed by the laboratory will be rolled out in projects undertaken by SJ, a government-owned consultancy company focusing on infrastructure and urban development, and eventually sold to companies and governments, especially those in the tropics.
Spurring Move to Greener Buildings
Standards for the Green Mark Scheme, launched in 2005 by the BCA to evaluate and set benchmarks for environmental sustainability in buildings, have been progressively raised. Under the latest rating, Green Mark for Super Low Energy, office buildings cannot use more than 100 kilowatt hour (kwh) per square metre a year. This is at least 60% more energy efficient compared with 2005 building codes.
“By setting such new performance benchmarks, Singapore can play an important role in mitigating climate change,” said BCA’s chief executive Hugh Lim.
More than 10 organisations, including the Defence Science and Technology Agency, Singapore Management University and City Developments have pledged to achieve at least one super low-energy project in the next  ve years.
The BCA is working with property developer Keppel Land to convert Keppel Bay Tower, a Green Mark Platinum building, into a super low-energy building. Five technologies to be tested in the 18-storey building include a smart lighting system, a fresh air intake system that regulates the  ow of outside air into the tower and a cooling tower system that regulates the structure’s temperature without the need for chemical water treatment.
If successful, the building’s annual energy consumption is expected to lessen by 20% to 115 kwh per square metre a year, saving the company an estimated S$250,000 annually.

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