KUALA LUMPUR: Sabah needs to develop additional energy sources to meet the needs of industry, with 89% of its power currently based on natural gas, says deputy investment, trade and industry minister Liew Chin Tong.
He said the state’s energy reserve margin is currently only at 11%, way below the ideal reserve margin of 30%.
Liew said the power shortage issue in Sabah is actually an opportunity to strengthen and expand energy sector investments in the state.
“Coal-based power plants are currently not an option to meet Sabah’s power needs, so new power sources or technology, including green power, must be explored as a long-term solution.
“Renewable energy sources include hydroelectric, wind, solar and ocean thermal energy conversion,” he said when winding up the Dewan Negara debate on the 12th Malaysia Plan mid-term review today.
Liew said the Sabah energy roadmap and master plan called for renewable energy generation to reach 1,000 megawatts or 50% of total generation capacity, by 2030.
“This would be a good thing to accomplish, given that the dependence on fossil energy sources is currently at 90%,” he said.
Liew said Sabah also has great potential in the development of the downstream palm oil, biomass and biogas industries, as the state is the largest palm oil producing territory in Malaysia.
“With the addition of the new power generation, Sabah can become a new investment destination in the country, and this will change the economic landscape, thus ensuring the well-being of Sabahans,” he said.
Liew added that the investment, trade and industry ministry and the Malaysian Investment Development Authority will continue to attract investments, including to Sabah, based on the respective strength and suitability of each locality.