Sarawak achieved a significant milestone in its green initiatives with the handover of the Long San Solar Hybrid Station by Shanghai Electric to Sarawak Energy. The successful completion of this project reaffirms Sarawak’s commitment to advancing sustainable energy solutions, even in remote areas.
Solar power is an important form of renewable energy that has the potential to meet the growing demand for electricity in Sarawak while also enhancing its position as an industry leader in producing safe, clean and affordable energy. The transition to greener energy bolsters the state’s efforts to achieve a more sustainable energy landscape in Southeast Asia.
The handover ceremony at Pullman Hotel in Kuching was officiated by the Premier of Sarawak, The Right Honourable Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri (Dr) Abang Haji Abdul Rahman Zohari bin Tun Datuk Abang Haji Openg.
The Premier was accompanied by Sarawak Minister for Utility and Telecommunication, Datuk Haji Julaihi Haji Narawi; Deputy Minister for Utility and Telecommunication I (Telecommunication), Datuk Liwan Lagang; Deputy Minister for Utility and Telecommunication II (Utility), Datuk Dr Haji Abdul Rahman Bin Haji Junaidi; Deputy Minister for Energy and Environmental Sustainability, Dr Haji Hazland Abang Hipni; Satok Assemblyman, Dato Ibrahim Bin Haji Baki and Telang Usan Assemblyman, Dennis Ngau as well as senior officials.
Also joining the event were the Consul General of the People’s Republic of China in Kuching, His Excellency Xing Wei Ping; President of Shanghai Electric Power Transmission & Distribution Group, Xiao Wei Hua and Vice President for Shanghai Electric Power Transmission & Distribution Group, Yang Xing Hai.
Chairman of Sarawak Energy, Datuk Amar Abdul Hamed Sepawi; Sarawak Energy Group Chief Executive Officer, Datu Haji Sharbini Suhaili alongside Sarawak Energy’s Group Executive Committee members also attended the event.
The domestic households at Long San in Baram were supplied by an off-grid diesel power station with an installed capacity of 345kW. The new solar hybrid station now provides renewable energy to 104 households and 16 other properties including a church, a clinic, mission houses and a school. This gives the Long San community a more sustainable source of energy, supporting the operation of basic services while promoting equitable socio-economic growth.
Speaking at the event, Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri (Dr) Abang Haji Abdul Rahman Zohari highlighted the Sarawak Government’s efforts in the “Projek Rakyat” initiative on Accelerated Rural Electrification Masterplan, which aims to deliver stable, reliable and affordable 24-hour electricity supply to rural communities; ultimately achieving full electrification by 2025.
“The launching of the facility will contribute to an elevated standard of living for the Long San community, by providing new economic opportunities as well as greater access to connectivity and engagement with the outside world.
“We will continue to take steps to close the gap between rural and urban communities and we will leverage existing initiatives like the Rural Electrification Scheme (RES) and Sarawak Alternative Rural Electrification Scheme (SARES) to provide affordable electricity to move closer towards realising this goal,” he said.
The Sarawak Premier also congratulated Sarawak Energy and Shanghai Electric for their contribution towards the establishment of the solar hybrid station, recognising their dedication and hard work to overcome challenges amidst the pandemic in delivering this important project.
Sarawak Energy Chairman, Datuk Amar Abdul Hamed Sepawi expressed the Group’s appreciation to Shanghai Electric for its donation of the solar hybrid station worth RM10 million as well as for sharing technologies and transferring technical skills to Sarawak as a gesture of goodwill.
Abdul Hamed said the new station would provide the Long San community with continued growth– ensuring greater prosperity for its people.
“We in Sarawak are very grateful for this donation from Shanghai Electric, as it will help drive our rural electrification efforts further to ensure everyone in Sarawak has access to 24/7 reliable and affordable electricity supply alongside other innovative solutions like the Sarawak Alternative Rural Electrification Scheme.”
He highlighted, “The Long San Solar Hybrid Station is the first solar hybrid station in Sarawak to utilise advanced Lithium-Ion battery and an energy management system to optimise renewable energy generation and to reduce dependence on costly diesel fuel.”
Sarawak Energy, Malaysia’s largest renewable energy developer, takes a holistic view of energy development – addressing the energy trilemma by balancing energy security, sustainability, and affordability to drive socio-economic transformation and power the state’s growth via renewable hydropower development.
To achieve full electrification by 2025, besides constructing the conventional transmission and distribution grids, Sarawak Energy is also leveraging new innovative methods such as microgrids to electrify isolated communities.
Abdul Hamed expressed his appreciation to the Sarawak Government through the leadership of the Premier of Sarawak, for championing the adoption of modern and advanced renewable energy systems, such as solar and green hydrogen, as well as for supporting mainstream power development towards realising Sarawak’s full domestic and rural electrification targets.
The signing and exchanging of the Long San Solar Hybrid Station handover certificate was later done between the Vice President of Shanghai Electric Power Transmission & Distribution Group, Yang Xing Hai, who is also the Chairman of Shanghai Electric for Malaysia and Sarawak Energy, who was represented by its Group Chief Executive Officer, Datu Haji Sharbini Suhaili. The signing and exchange were witnessed by the Premier of Sarawak, formalising the handover of the project.
The Long San Solar Hybrid Station was donated by Shanghai Electric, covering its supply, delivery, installation, testing, and commissioning of 350kWp of solar PV panels, 7 racks of batteries, and associated electronic converters and control systems. The project commenced in January 2021 and was completed in April 2022.