KOTA KINABALU: The country's first environmental-friendly geothermal power generation plant will begin operating in Tawau in three years.
The 36mW plant costing some RM572mil would be built and operated by Sabah-based Tawau Green Energy Sdn Bhd (TGE) with the electricity being channelled to the Sabah Electricity Sdn Bhd (SESB) power grid.
State Tourism, Culture and Environment Minister Datuk Masidi Manjun witnessed the signing of a 21-year renewable energy power purchase agreement between TGE and SESB yesterday.
TGE project director Andrew Amaladoss said the geothermal plant would be built on a 20ha site about 20km from Tawau town and adjacent to the Tawau Hills Park.
Amaladoss said TGE would tap geothermal energy by drilling 12 wells to a depth of between 1.8km and 2km.
The hot water from geothermal reservoirs produces high pressure steam to spin a turbine to rotate a generator.
"It is only now that someone has come forward to develop, utilise and commercialise this resource for the benefits of Sabahans," he added.
Amaladoss said the project was also eligible for carbon credits under the Clean Development Mechanism, Kyoto Protocol of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.
Compared to other fuels, the carbon footprint of geothermal power is 65 times less than that of coal, 49 times less than of fossil fuel and 40 times lesser than natural gas.
SESB managing director Baharin Din said it welcomed the project as it would help Sabah diversity its energy sources and power generation apart from reducing the state's depence on fossil fuel.
Source from: The Star
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