Singapore to have first hydrogen-ready power plant by H1 2026

The combined cycle gas turbine power plant developed will use natural gas as its primary fuel for now but is also designed to operate on fuels with 30 percent hydrogen content.

Ang Qing

Ang Qing

The Straits Times


Manpower Minister Tan See Leng (third from right) with (from left) Jurong Engineering CEO Koichi Watanabe, Keppel Infrastructure CEO Cindy Lim, Keppel Corp CEO Loh Chin Hua, EMA chief executive Ngiam Shih Chun and Mitsubishi Power Asia Pacific CEO Osamu Ono at the signing ceremony on Aug 30, 2022. PHOTO: KEPPEL CORPORATION LIMITED

September 1, 2022

SINGAPORE – Singapore is expected to get its first hydrogen-ready power plant by the first half of 2026 as the Republic transitions its power sector into one using less carbon-emitting fuels.

The Keppel Sakra Cogen Plant, which can be run entirely on clean-burning hydrogen in the future, will be built on Jurong Island and is slated to produce up to 600MW of electricity, said Keppel Infrastructure, Mitsubishi Power and Jurong Engineering in a statement on Tuesday (Aug 30).

This amounts to about 9 per cent of Singapore’s peak electricity demand in 2020 and could power around 864,000 four-room Housing Board flats for a year.

The combined cycle gas turbine power plant developed by Keppel Infrastructure will use natural gas as its primary fuel for now.

However, the plant is also designed to operate on fuels with 30 per cent hydrogen content, which produce less carbon than fossil fuels, and has the capability of shifting to run entirely on hydrogen, the companies said.

Hydrogen can be obtained in several ways, and when used as a fuel, produces water as a by-product.

Currently, about 95 per cent of Singapore’s energy is generated from natural gas, the least-polluting form of fossil fuel.

Compared with other power plants in Singapore, more energy-efficient technology at the Keppel Sakra Cogen power plant will lead to a reduction of 220,000 tonnes of carbon emissions annually, the equivalent of taking about 47,000 cars off the road each year, the companies said.

In addition, the power plant will be able to produce steam that can be used by energy and chemicals customers on Jurong Island for industrial processes, they added.

The plant is estimated to cost around $750 million and will be constructed by a consortium comprising Mitsubishi Power Asia-Pacific and Jurong Engineering.

The latest move to develop infrastructure suitable for hydrogen comes as Singapore aims to bring carbon emissions by the power sector, which now account for 40 per cent of the nation’s emissions, to net zero by 2050.

The Energy 2050 Committee report commissioned by the Energy Market Authority (EMA) earmarked the use of low-carbon hydrogen to meet energy demands as one of the strategies to hit this target.

Nations across the globe are ramping up production of hydrogen to cut polluting greenhouse gas emissions, with the global Hydrogen Council reporting a total of 680 projects valued at US$240 billion (S$335 billion), a sharp spike from projects worth about US$160 billion six months ago.

In addition to signing contracts to build Singapore’s first hydrogen power plant, Keppel New Energy, a subsidiary of Keppel Infrastructure, signed an agreement with Mitsubishi Heavy Industries to study the feasibility of developing a 100 per cent ammonia-fuelled power plant on “a selected site in Singapore”.

Like hydrogen, ammonia does not produce carbon when it is used to produce energy.

Together, the future power plants will contribute to building a more resilient and sustainable energy sector in Singapore and South-east Asia, the companies said.

On the Keppel Sakra Cogen plant, Ms Cindy Lim, chief executive of Keppel Infrastructure, said: “When completed, this asset will grow Keppel’s power generation portfolio from the current 1,300MW to 1,900MW, allowing us to capture a larger market share as the demand for reliable energy continues to rise with Singapore’s economic development.”

Said Mr Ngiam Shih Chun, chief executive of EMA: “Singapore’s electricity demand is projected to grow with increasing electrification and economic growth.

“(Thus), the Energy Market Authority welcomes investments by the private sector to bring in best-in-class technologies in power generation.”

scroll to top