2,000 households to take part in energy-saving challenge

The cost savings of participating households will be matched dollar-for-dollar by the South West Community Development Council and Singapore Power and donated to needy families in the district.
Olivia Siong, Channel NewsAsia 31 Jan 16;

SINGAPORE: Starting April, more than 2,000 households in Singapore’s South West district will take part in an energy-saving challenge to reduce their electricity consumption for a good cause.

Over a three-month period, the cost savings of participating households will be matched dollar-for-dollar by the South West Community Development Council and Singapore Power, and donated to about 1,000 needy families in the district.

About S$50,000 in cost-savings can be achieved during the pilot, the project’s organisers estimated.

The initiative was launched at the district's ECo Day Out by Environment and Water Resources Minister Masagos Zulkifli and Mayor of the South West District Low Yen Ling.

The goal is for one block in each of the 17 districts to come on board the initiative. The organisers hope that the programme can be eventually rolled out to the rest of the district, Ms Low said.

"This initiative is to combine the message of energy conservation with the drive to do good," she said. "This friendly challenge between the residents - we hope that it will encourage everyone in South West to come on board and get in the habit of saving energy. We firmly believe we can do more with less."

Each household is also encouraged to download the Singapore Power mobile application to track their power consumption. The app also allows them to compare their consumption patterns with that of their neighbours.

More than 200 volunteers from Singapore Power, grassroots and students from ITE College West will also be on hand to help participating households.

"What I'm asking you is to think how to make it a culture," said Mr Masagos. "So you don't just do this once a year, you don't just do this because we come together, but you do this as a way of life. That is the challenge - that all of us in Singapore must convert our affluent lifestyle, caring for the environment and protecting the environment for our children."

It is hoped the energy saving pilot can eventually be implemented in the entire district.

- CNA/cy

Over 2,000 households to compete on who can save the most energy
SIAU MING EN Today Online 31 Jan 16;

SINGAPORE — More than 2,000 households in South West Community Development Council (CDC) will be participating in a pilot contest to reduce their energy consumption over a three-month period, with the goal of achieving S$50,000 in cost-savings.

The cost-savings reaped from the project will then be matched dollar-for-dollar by Singapore Power (SP) and South West CDC, and donated to the needy families in the district.

Partnering SP for the pilot, participating residents will be encouraged to download the SP Services mobile application to track and compare their electricity usage against that of their neighbours. The mobile app was piloted last year and some 260,000 people have tried it.

There will also be a friendly competition among the 17 blocks of flats selected for the pilot, as well as among the individual households within each block, to see who manages to save the most energy.

About 200 volunteers, including the grassroots volunteers, SP staff and ITE College West students, will make regular visits to participating households to explain how to use the app, conduct monthly household checks and offer energy-saving tips.

Speaking to the media on the sidelines of the district’s annual ECo Day Out held at Hong Kah North Community Club today (Jan 31), Mayor of the South West District Low Yen Ling said: “This friendly challenge between the residents, we hope, will encourage everyone in South West to come on board and get into the habit of saving energy.”

Boon Lay resident Nicoll Peh, 34, said she would be keen on joining the pilot as her home’s electricity bill had gone up after she gave birth to twin sons. “The immediate benefits will be the cost-savings,” said the engineer, before adding that instead of turning on the air-conditioning at home, her family may try to use the fan more often, among other ways and means to save energy.

Minister for the Environment and Water Resources Masagos Zulkifli, who was the guest of honour at the event today, also encouraged residents to do their part for the environment.

Citing the increasing amount of domestic waste being thrown out — from the 1.6 million tonnes in 2012 to the 1.74 million tonnes in 2014 — Mr Masagos noted that reducing wastage should be “a way of life” for Singaporeans.

“That is a challenge that all of us in Singapore must overcome. Despite our affluent lifestyles, we should care (for) and protect our environment for our loved ones and our children,” he added.

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