Updated: Aug 14
Our popular blog article was updated and published under the title "DBKL's push for energy efficiency and renewable energy" in the @green magazine (July-August 2021 issue):
Updates to the article included examples of solar integrated facade solutions available on the market today, such as solar facade panels, solar glass spandrels, printed solar artwork panels and solar windows. Moreover, we added a cartoon depicting the energy flows in buildings by comparing buildings to a leaky bucket where the water leaks represent the energy wastage. It is evident, that the first step should be to plug the holes (energy efficiency), before pouring more water the bucket (energy supply):
The emergence of electric vehicles is captured by the cartoon. The energy required to charge electric vehicles will significantly increase the energy consumption of buildings once they become commonplace. This is not the case yet in Malaysia, as depicted in the cartoon with the electric car's retracted straw from the leaky bucket.
While electric charging infrastructure should be provided for in residential and non-residential buildings alike, it is doubtful that most high-rise non-residential buildings - even when highly energy efficient - will have sufficient surface area to meet the 30% renewable energy requirement, especially when electric car charging is also included. As such, allowing for some degree of off-site renewables to help meet the 30% renewable energy requirement seems like a pragmatic solution going forward. In order words, a combination of energy efficiency, onsite renewable energy and some degree off-site renewable energy seems the right way forward, and it that order of priority.
"Greater use of Renewable Energy reduces the demand for energy from grid, and greater Energy Efficiency results in higher shares of Renewable Energy"
Calculator for Solar Energy on Buildings
The following simplified formula gives a rough estimation of the solar photovoltaic (PV) roof area required to meet DBKL's 30% renewable energy requirement:
In case the required roof area (Equation 1) exceeds the available roof PV area, the additional PV façade area can be estimated from this formula: