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What is Sustainable Energy?

It means

- Saving energy through better utilization and consumption. In other words trying to achieve maximum energy efficiency for any task

- Using renewable energy instead of that from fossil fuels so that finite resources are not depleted and Greenhouse Gases (GHGs) generation is reduced

- Optimising the match between primary energy sources and final end-use with minimal wastages & adverse environmental impacts.

By providing sustainable energy, we will improve the environment by reducing the emissions of greenhouse gases, maintain natural resources by using renewable sources energy such as solar, biomass, wind and wave. Technologies using renewable energy are available and cost-effective in delivering power.

Energy Efficiency

What is energy efficiency?

Simply put, energy efficiency means using less energy to accomplish the same task. Take the example of boiling water, which option would save more energy? a) use an electrical kettle to boil water or b) use a traditional kettle using gas to boil water. Using a traditional kettle on a gas stove is much more energy efficient from especially system approach.

To be energy efficient is easy. You just need to monitor your use of energy. There are simple changes you can make around the house to save energy, which will save you money as well.

Why is it important?

More efficient use of energy throughout our country results in less money spent on energy by homeowners, schools, government agencies, businesses, and industries. The money that would have been spent on energy can instead be spent on consumer goods, education, services, and products.

As individuals, your home has a direct impact on the environment. Power stations that provide our electricity, generally burn fossil fuels to supply our energy needs. Cars and motorcycles also burn fossil fuels. By burning fossil fuels, large amounts of gases are released into the atmosphere, causing an increase in temperature. This leads to what is known as the greenhouse effect, which is causing global warming. In addition other air pollutants are also generated. All of which impact negatively on our environment.

By being wasteful in energy usage means more energy is being consumed. For example, a normal bulb requires additional units of energy compared to an energy efficient one. These additional units of energy mean more burning of fossil fuels. And this increases the polluting gases in the atmosphere. That is why it is necessary to identify the energy being wasted in the home, and make the necessary adjustments, that will not only help you save money, but will help preserve our environment.

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Renewable Energy (RE)

It is Malaysias Goal by 2005 to generate 5% of its electricity from renewable resources. Malaysia introduced renewable energy as the countrys fifth (5th) fuel source.

What is renewable energy?

Renewable energy includes resources that are constantly present, which never run out, like the energy we get from the sun or energy from wind. Types of renewable energy are;

(i) Solar: The Earths surface receives so much solar energy from the sun everyday, that if this energy is harnessed for even just 60 seconds, it would be enough to power the worlds total energy requirements for a year. Even though solar energy is a free and unlimited resource, it is hardly utilised because of oil which is cheap and easy to produce. Solar energy is currently most used for water heating. It can be directly converted to electricity through solar cells. These non-polluting solar cells, known as photovoltaic cells use no fuel, mechanical turbine or a generator. Solar energy has enormous potential as a resource of clean and unlimited electricity around the world and with the increasing demand for energy coupled with increasing environmental pollution from the burning of fossil fuel, its time to tap into this. In Malaysia, installation of solar PV cells is done mainly in rural areas, where there is difficulty setting up electricity cables or it is used by individuals (private homes).

(ii) Hydroelectric: Hydroelectric power is the leading source of renewable energy. It provides about 97% of all electricity generated by renewable energy sources worldwide. Water is a precious resource and can be found in abundance. When it is harnessed for hydroelectric energy, it can power the lighting for entire cities. The only time a hydropower facility is polluting is during its construction. Once it has been built, it does not need fuel to produce electricity. But the idea or use of hydropower is a highly debatable topic and remains a controversial issue. Despite being a source of clean electricity, the damage caused by dams during its construction and through its operation often gives rise to it construction being protested (refers mainly to large dams). When done right however, small run-of-the-river hydropower can be a sustainable and nonpolluting power source. Here in Malaysia, hydropower is used for water supply, flood control, irrigation and recreation purposes. Malaysia has abundant hydropower potential with a total potential capacity of 29,000 MW (with 70% in Sarawak).

(iii) Wind: Wind energy is captured by wind turbines. Studies done in Malaysia indicated that only a few places in the East Coast have sufficient wind energy for utilization. Malaysia has wind turbines installed in remote areas in Sabah and Sarawak.

(iv) Biomass: Biomass consists of organic matter that makes up plants. Biomass energy can be used for generating electricity, transportation fuels and chemicals. The type of biomass material considered to have potential as renewable energy sources here in Malaysia include residues from palm oil, rice mills and wood mills.

(v) Hydrogen: Hydrogen is the most abundant element on earth. It does not occur naturally as gas and needs to be first separated from other elements before it can be burned as fuel or converted to electricity.

(vi) Geothermal: Geothermal energy taps Earths internal heat for electric power production and for the heating and cooling of buildings. Geothermal energy is produced when groundwater (from Earths surface) meets molten magma. Most of this groundwater remains deep underground, trapped in cracks and porous rock while some water does escape back to the surface forming hot springs and geysers. The portion that remains underground exists as geothermal reservoirs close to the surface and can be easily tapped for power generation.

Why is it important?

The energy we use today comes mainly from non-renewable sources such as coal, oil, natural gas and uranium, all of which are finite resources and will be depleted. Additionally, the use of these types of fuel are damaging to our health and to the environment. Renewable energy on the other hand has the potential to produce clean energy for our use, for all time for everyone. Renewable energy systems help reduce greenhouse gas emissions and are being recognised as a major source of energy for the 21st century and beyond.

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Easy ways to save energy

There are simple things in your everyday life that you can do to save energy.

1. In the Home

  • Remember to switch off the lights and fans when you leave a room.
  • TVs, Radios and air-conditioners should be switched off at the plug point.
  • Try and have natural ventilation coming through your home, to reduce the need for fans and air-conditioners.
  • Have some indoor plants, as plants help cool the surrounding.
  • Use all household appliances efficiently; e.g. when using the washing machine, run full loads only
  • Make use of natural light.
  • Use the most appropriate energy source; e.g. gas for cooking rather than an electric cooker which uses much more energy.

2. While Shopping

  • Try not to buy products/material that have excessive packaging, or uses plastics made from non-renewable material.
  • Choose items/products that have a long life, can be re-used, repaired or recycled.
  • Look for energy labels/energy ratings at the back of appliances.
    Bring along your own shopping bag to reduce the use of plastic bags.

3. Transportation

  • For short distances, it is better to travel on foot or cycle.
  • Try using more public transport. It helps you avoid traffic congestion and saves costs on parking, tolls and fuel.
  • Carpool. Carry four people instead of one and help reduce your emissions of greenhouse gases and energy consumption.
  • Dont leave your car engine running idle for too long.
  • Limit use of car by combining all errands into one journey. This will save you fuel, running costs and parking fees.

4. In the Garden

  • Plant leafy trees, shrubs and grasses in the garden.
  • Leafy trees will provide shade and shield your house from direct sunlight.
  • Plants also help cool surrounding areas.

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[ FiT and SAVE | SSEEAP | DDC | WCPJ | ABC | TOP of page ]

FiT & SAVE Project


CETDEM is managing an 18-Month Awareness and Capacity Building Project funded by SEDA Malaysia (Sustainable Energy Development Authority).

CETDEM is to conduct a series of half day workshops in 13 major cities/towns. These workshops will be preceded by a 1-day Energy Efficiency Exhibition at a Shopping Mall close-by to the workshop venue.

These events will be publicised in the media prior to each event.

CETDEM will engage local NGOs for part-time project-paid staff in preparatory work and event-day assistance to CETDEM’s project staff.

This project began in September 2012 and it is scheduled to end in February 2014.

Click here to read more about FiT & SAVE Project

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Secondary School Energy Efficiency Action Project

Awareness and involvement of young people in energy issues is of vital importance for the future of energy management and environmental protection. It is time to get down to basics, and we now have the opportunity to bring our message to the schools.

Beginning from September 2008, the project officer sent invitations to 24 secondary schools in Kuala Lumpur. It was only at the end of January 2009 that the five schools had been confirmed.

Forms and Materials

1. Brochure
2. Poster
3. User Manual
4. interactive CD

Official Launch

Official launching for the project was held on 15 April 2009 at SMK Seri Ampang.

CETDEM Chairman, Mr. Gurmit Singh, officiated the launch. Tuan Haji Mohd Shafie from Keramat Education Office spoke on behalf of Kuala Lumpur Education Department while Ms Grace Choo Sor Mooi, ExxonMobil Safety and Health Manager, spoke on behalf of the funder. All the five schools sent representatives.

Tuan Haji Mohd Shafie, Ms Grace Choo Sor Mooi
and Mr. Gurmit Singh light-up a touch-sensor bulb to signify
the beginning of the Energy Efficiency Competition

Activities in School

The Energy Efficiency Committee for each school had to produce an energy baseline assessment by using the electricity bills or school meters and walk-through audit, where the students involved had to get the energy consumption of each appliances or places in school.

The Committee for each school was in charge of energy efficiency enforcement and monitoring. The school administration also reviewed their existing energy policy and enforced new measures to reduce energy consumption during the energy efficiency competition period.

The Committee also conducted energy audits to check on energy consumption and to identify the main energy consumers.

The activities with schools ran for about 8 months starting on April 2009 until September 2009.

Official Closing

The Award presentation and Official Closing Ceremony was held on 12 January 2010 at Park Royal Hotel, Kuala Lumpur. VIPS present were Encik Badaruddin Bin Mahyuddin (Senior Under Secretary (Energy Division) from Ministry of Energy, Green Technology & Water), Puan Roziah Noordin (ExxonMobil Exploration Incorporation Safety and Risk Manager), and Mr Gurmit Singh (CETDEM Chairman).

Champions – SMK (Perempuan) Methodist

Position School Cash Prize
1st SMK Perempuan Methodist RM5,000
2nd SMK Perempuan Pudu RM3,000
3rd SMK Victoria RM2,000
Consolation SMK Seri Ampang & SMK Lelaki Methodist RM1,000 each


SSEEAP started on 1 November 2008 and ended in January 2010. This project was funded by ExxonMobil.

Click here to read more about SSEEAP Project

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Demonstration & Documentation Center for Sustainable Energy Solutions for Urban Households

CETDEM, which always promotes the sustainable use of energy and energy efficiency, launched this project on 1st March, 2004. The aim of this project is to enhance public awareness on this issue by sharing information and demonstrating sustainable energy solutions. The main target group are urban households who have comfortable houses with air-conditioning and hot water supply. This project can educate Malaysians to contribute to sustainable development by promoting renewable energy as a “fifth fuel” and to increase awareness among urban households about sustainable – energy solutions.

Before Renovation / Retrofitting

Documentation & Demonstration Centre

A documentation & demonstration centre on sustainable energy usage is to be established in an urban house in Petaling Jaya. Since no such demonstration house exists in the country, it would be a pioneering and modelling effort to have such a demonstration house in Malaysia. Its success would encourage more middle class Malaysians to undertake changes when they next renovate their homes.

After – Features of the Cool Demonstration House


As local funding for such a project is still not forthcoming. DANIDA support is needed in order to advance existing Danced support in the energy, climate change & NGO sectors in Malaysia. The Danish partner for this project is The Danish Organisation for Renewable Energy (OVE) that was founded in 1975. OVE is a non-profit, non-governmental organisation (NGO) working for an energy policy based 100% on the use of renewable and sustainable energy.

Project Activities

DDC Project activities included:
- Exhibitions around Malaysia
- Energy Efficiency Briefings around Malaysia
- Stakeholders Workshop
- House Briefings in SS2 Petaling Jaya


Rockwool Insulation

Cross-section View of the Roof

PV Output

On 5 Feb 2007, CETDEM Chairman personally submitted the Memorandum on a Comprehensive Malaysian Energy Policy to the Minister of Water, Energy and Communications, Malaysia.

Click here for the Memorandum on a Comprehensive Malaysian Energy Policy (2007)

DDC Project started on 1 March 2004 and ended in February 2007. This project was funded by DANIDA.

Click here to read more about DDC Project

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Working with the Community on Energy Efficiency at Household Level in Petaling Jaya

WCPJ is designed as a follow through of ABC. Petaling Jaya had been selected for this pilot project.

CETDEM worked with the Resident Associations (RAs) through the Local Municipality (namely MPPJ) to identify participating households.

A Signing Ceremony and Official Launch was held at Petaling Jaya Hilton. 21 participants signed MoU, 10 media representives and 10 guests were present. Dato’ Ahmad Termizi (Yang DiPertua MPPJ) officially launched the project. Ir Gurmit Singh, En Mokhtar Daud (ExxonMobil), Dr Martin Abraham (GEF/SPG) and Dato’ Ahmad Termizi attended the Media Conference held at the end of the event.

Registration of participants

En Mokhtar Daud (extreme right) handing over a mock cheque to
Ir Gurmit Singh (extreme left), as Dr Martin (2nd left) and
Dato’ Ahmad Termizi (3rd left) look on

The selected group of 50+ participants were exposed to issues relating to energy usage in the home. Energy Efficiency (EE) was highlighted to participants to sensitise them on the importance of being efficient users of energy. The project team provided guidance and follow-up services, free of charge, throughout the project study period (April-November 2006).

Forms and Materials

Project Information Brochure.
Memorandum of Understanding.
Energy Audit Form.
Zero Cost Actions Form.
Actions Incurring Some Cost.
Project Feedback Form.

Overall Results

This chart shows one of the findings of the Study.

WCPJ started on 16th Jan 2006 and ended in December 2006. This project was funded by ExxonMobil.

Click here to read more about WCPJ Project

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Increasing Awareness & Building Capacity of Urban Malaysians on Sustainable Energy Options

As the third largest per capita greenhouse gas (GHG) emitter among the ten ASEAN nations, Malaysia has a responsibility to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions from all sectors, including urban households.

A comprehensive energy consumption profile of Malaysian urban households can help decision makers and industrial players understand domestic energy needs and subsequently, decision makers can employ more energy efficient policies.

The Awareness & Building Capacity of Sustainable Energy Lifestyles among Urban Households project (ABC) funded by the UNDP Global Environmental Facility (GEF) aims to build the capacity and raise the awareness of a range of urban Malaysians to assess their energy uses and motivate them to reduce such usage to sustainable levels so that their climate change ecological footprints are reduced.

The target was to get energy audit completed by 500 households, in 5 different Malaysian towns.

Energy Audit Form 1

The project had to be modified to overcome problems that arose over time. The finalised baseline energy consumption data came from 238 households from 9 towns/areas.

Phase I: July 2004 to Feb 2005 – Kuala Lumpur, Selangor, Kota Kinabalu, Kuching and Kudat.
127 responses were collected.

Phase II: July to Oct 2005 – Malacca, Penang, Johor and Miri.
111 responses were collected:


1. A citizens manual.
2. Energy Efficiency Briefings.
3. A report of the Energy Audits.
4. An Interactive CD.

Energy Consumption Patterns

Overall Energy Consumption Breakdown

Project began on 1 April 2003 and ended in June 2006. The Project was funded by UNDP/GEF SGP.

Click here to read more about ABC Project

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