Free Comparison And Contrast OF Renewable Energy Policies And Development Programs OF Malaysia And Germany Article Review Example
The production of Renewable Energy is vital for today’s environmental wellbeing of the planet as it benefits the environment immensely. Renewable be produced all across the globe as the sources of this energy are found over vast geographical area as compared to the other conventional sources that present only in certain countries and regions of the world. Benefits of renewable energy are numerous including energy security, cost effectiveness and positive trends in climate change mitigation. This paper compares and contrasts the government policies and development programs of two vital countries with renewable energy reforms: Malaysia and Germany. Malaysia embraced the renewable energy business in 2001 when the Fifth Fuel Diversification Policy was introduced as one of the major policy components in the 5 year development program, the Eighth Malaysia Plan (2001 – 2005)
Renewable Energy Policies of Malaysia
The energy mix of Malaysia depends immensely on the sources that non-renewable in nature. The fluctuations in fossil fuel prices doesn’t go well for the economy of the country, hence the need of alternative sources of energy rose for the country (Hosseini and Abdul Wahid). Malaysia’s National Energy Policy was formed by the Economic Planning Unit in 1979. The Prime Minister’s Department was responsible for the introduction of this policy and over time various other policies were introduced to meet the supply objective of the country. Umar, Jennings and Urmee notice in their article that:
“Malaysia embraced the renewable energy business in 2001 when the Fifth Fuel Diversification Policy was introduced as one of the major policy components in the 5 year development program, the Eighth Malaysia Plan (2001 – 2005).” (Umar, Jennings and Urmee)
This document aimed to bring around reliability while optimizing energy security. It also consisted of necessary measure that made certain that the country would be protected from the harmful and negative effects of the increase in energy prices and the increasing dependence on traditional fuel sources such as gas, oil and coal. In addition, this policy was designed to increase the share of renewable energy in the power supply by encouraging small-scale renewable power producers to generate electricity from sustainable sources and feed their excess power to the main grid. This policy was designed in such a way that it aimed to encourage small scale renewable power producers and as a result increase the productivity of renewable energy. This way, sustainable sources could be used to generate power while maintaining the production of power in the main grids (Umar, Jennings and Urmee).
The current five – year Malaysian plan faces the rationalization of the of fuel subsidies. The Government aimed to dedicate and allot a subsidy which is why the New Energy Policy (NEP) aims to increase the power price to y $0.98 per million British thermal units every 6 months.
During this period, vehicle fuel subsidies remain unchanged. The energy security by developing alternative energy resources, with emphasis on renewable and sustainable power generation and biofuels for the transportation sector, has been addressed in the NEP. Some programs such as Green Building Index initiatives and the Malaysia Green Labeling Program have been projected under the NEP to extend and enhance the efficient use of energy in Malaysia (Hosseini and Abdul Wahid).
In case of Germany, the renewable energy production has been quite successful for the country due to its innovative program and government policies. Support from the Renewable Energy has been there in almost all of the governments of Germany after 1998. The country was set to end its nuclear energy program by 2040, a policy in line with shifting the country’s energy sector’s focus towards renewable energy. After Fukushima incident, Germany decided to pull out of the nuclear program before 2022 (Lang and Lang).
In its core, the Energy Policy of Germany is framed in the policy of European Union. The European Union is aiming to reduce the emission of harmful greenhouse gas – Carbon di oxide by twenty percent before the end of the year 2020. It requires the member states to take necessary steps needed to achieve the goal. Furthermore, it also requires the member state to bring their consumption of renewable energy to be twenty percent to their total consumption to achieve its goals of renewable energy consumption. EU also left the decision of whether or not, they want to continue using nuclear energy as it is considered to be emission free, but not renewable. Germany, it seems, has made a policy to take necessary steps to ensure the consumption and production of renewable energy only, instead of nuclear one.
Renewable Energy Programs of Malaysia
The Small Renewable Energy Power (SREP)
This program was one of the major steps taken to launch increase the efficiency of this sector. The purpose of this plan was to facilitate renewable energy projects and to encourage developers who wished to work with it. The program had sub-programs which were very successful. Mekhilef et al. state about the program that:
Through SREP Program, independent small RE power plants could sell generated electricity to the grid. This program covered almost all renewable energy sources such as solar, wind, biomass, mini-hydro, biogas and MSW. The special Committee on Renewable Energy (SCORE)
(Mekhilef et al.).
However, this was not a venture which received successful response and for the Ninth Malaysia Plan (2006 – 2010) the capacity of renewable energy was trimmed down to 1.8%. The overall grid capacity under this program was 65MW, which fell short of expectations of the Ninth Plan visibly (Umar, Jennings and Urmee). The causes of the low success rate of this scheme were attributed to be poor infrastructure and support systems, irregular biomass supply, financial obstructions and inefficient combustion technologies (Hosseini and Abdul Wahid).
The UNDP-GEF Biomass Power Generation and Demonstration (BioGen) Project
This program followed the SREP and sought to high efficiency renewable energy generation for the palm oil industry. The Government supported this program and met the technological needs of its sustenance. The basic aim of this program was to reduce methane emissions from bio mass decay and use the waste from palm oil industries to generate renewable energy. Two smaller sub-programs were introduced under this program which included the FELDA Besout POME Biogas Project, and Bandar Baru Serting Biomass Project.
The Malaysian Building Integrated Photovoltaic (MBIPV) Project
This project was launched in 2004 to reduce GHG emissions and encourage the use of PV systems in the industry sector and householders. Under this project, applicants could contribute to the program on the basis of a bidding system. This system would be open to the public every six months. Though introduced in good faith, the project was impractical terms of cost efficiency and hence alternate sources needed to be introduced for production of power.
The Economic Transformation Program (ETP)
Introduced in 2010, this program was meant to lift the economy of the country and make it high income nation by the year 2020. The basic purpose was to introduce alternatives for the sources of energy which seemed to be harmful. It aimed to slowly eliminate incandescent light bulbs by 2014. Apart from this the carbon dioxide emissions are intended to be decreased by 732,000. Reduction of energy consumption by 1074 GW is also expected.
The Feed-in Tariff (FiT)
This program was first introduced by the United States and introduced in Malaysia in 2011. Monitored by the Sustainable Energy Development Authority of Malaysia (SEDA) the program aimed to use 1% of the electricity tariff to develop the renewable energy projects more efficiently. The use of this tariff however, will not have an adverse effect on the consumption of electricity. This program is all about raising awareness about renewable energy sources and to give their sustenance a head start.
Renewable Energy Programs of Germany
Feed in Tariff (FIT)
Feed in Tariff system was developed in 1991 after the act known as “Electricity Feed in Tariff” was passed. FIT system has already been explained before.
Renewable Energy Sources Act
In order to encourage people in investing in renewable energy sector, the government aided the sector by passing Renewable Energy Sources Act that helps in the promotion of renewable energy in the country by stipulating the so called “feed-in tarrifs”. Those people who have the ability to produce renewable energy have a right to sell the energy on a fixed price for around 15-20 years. The decision was followed by a significant investment in the renewable energy sector (Haas et al.).
The Act also separated the tariff level from the retail price of electricity being sold to the common consumers of Germany and introduced new tariffs that has their basis on the actual cost incurred during the generation of the technology.
In conclusion, the programs and policies of both Germany and Malaysia are in line with the needs of renewable energy of the time. Both of these countries have programs for the future to ensure that their development and consumption of renewable energy like The Malaysian Building Integrated Photovoltaic (MBIPV) Project and SREP. German Renewable Energy Sources Act, feed in tariff, and Investment Security. It can be concluded that German program is better than the Malaysian program due to its bigger achievable goals and current state of program. As Hass et, al. conclude the German case study, “All in all, the German way is considered a success story.” However, Malaysia is not a failure. It is progressing towards a success story, too.
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Lang, Matthias, and Annette Lang. 'Clear Bundestag Majority For 2022 Nuclear Phase-Out And Coalition Party Approval For Energy Package'. German Energy Blog. N.p., 2011. Web. 11 Jan. 2015.
Mekhilef, Saad et al. 'Malaysia’s Renewable Energy Policies And Programs With Green Aspects'. Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews 40 (2014): 497-504. Web. 11 Jan. 2015.
Umar, Mohd Shaharin, Philip Jennings, and Tania Urmee. 'Generating Renewable Energy From Oil Palm Biomass In Malaysia: The Feed-In Tariff Policy Framework'. Biomass and Bioenergy 62 (2014): 37-46. Web. 11 Jan. 2015.