Singapore, 26 December 2019 – As part of the National Environment Agency’s (NEA) on-going efforts to improve energy efficiency in Singapore industry, water-cooled chilled water systems in industrial facilities  must conform to minimum energy efficiency requirements from 1 December 2020 onwards.
MEES for Water-cooled Chilled Water Systems in Industrial Facilities
2 Under the Paris Agreement, Singapore pledged to reduce our greenhouse gas Emissions Intensity by 36 per cent from 2005 levels by 2030, and stabilise our greenhouse gas emissions with the aim of peaking around 2030.
3 An analysis of data  submitted by energy-intensive industrial facilities regulated under the Energy Conservation Act (ECA) revealed that chilled water systems for process and space cooling accounted for approximately 16 per cent of the electricity consumed at these facilities – making them the second highest electricity-consuming system in the industry .
4 More than 70 per cent of these systems were however operating at sub-optimal efficiency performance. Water-cooled systems are the predominant type of chilled water systems in these facilities, and account for more than 90 per cent of the electricity consumed by chilled water systems.
5 To improve the energy efficiency of water-cooled chilled water systems in new and existing industrial facilities, NEA is introducing Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards (MEES).
6 Water-cooled chilled water systems in new industrial facilities must conform to MEES after a prescribed period if Planning Permission (PP) clearance or equivalent is sought on or after 1 December 2020. Water-cooled chilled water systems in existing energy-intensive industrial facilities  regulated under the ECA must conform to MEES by 1 December 2025, while those in other industrial facilities must conform by 1 December 2029. Please refer to the Annex for more details on MEES.
7 MEES will help reduce the energy consumption in industrial facilities by at least 245 GWh annually, equivalent to taking more than 21,000 cars off the road. Companies may use different approaches to meet MEES, such as installing more energy efficient chillers and optimising their systems.
8 The introduction of MEES for chilled water systems will help to raise the energy performance of these systems and catalyse industry to adopt, develop and operate more energy efficient systems, thereby helping facility owners reap lifecycle cost savings from:
- lower capital costs by right-sizing equipment;
- lower operating costs as a result of lower energy use; and
- lower maintenance costs as frictional and vibrational energy losses are reduced.
9 Mr Ananda Ram Bhaskar, Deputy Chief Executive Officer (Environmental Protection) of NEA, said, “NEA consulted industry and there is broad support for the new energy efficiency standards. Our stakeholders recognise that greater value can be realised when systems, such as chilled water systems, are optimised as a whole, compared to component-level efficiency improvements.”
10 Grants are available to support companies to upgrade their water-cooled chilled water systems before the mandatory requirements kick in. Industrial companies can contact NEA for more information.
11 NEA is also exploring the feasibility of extending MEES to other industrial systems and equipment.
 An industrial facility refers to:
a) any multi-user facility that is sited on URA Masterplan B1 or B2 zone; or
b) any single-user facility that has a business activity attributable to any of the following industry sectors:
i.manufacturing and manufacturing-related services;
ii.supply of electricity, gas, steam, compressed air and chilled water for air-conditioning; and
iii. water supply and sewage and waste management.
 Based on the reports submitted by industrial facilities regulated under the ECA in 2018 for their energy use in 2017.
 Process specific systems, which are bespoke, are the highest electricity-consuming system in the industry. The new energy efficiency opportunities assessment (EEOA) requirement under the ECA will help companies identify EE improvement opportunities in such process-specific systems.
 Energy-intensive industrial facilities refer to facilities that have attained the energy use threshold of 15 GWh per year for at least two out of three preceding years, and have a business activity belonging to any of the following industry sectors:
a) manufacturing and manufacturing-related services;
b) supply of electricity, gas, steam, compressed air and chilled water for air-conditioning; and
c) water supply and sewage and waste management.
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For more information, please contact us at 1800-CALL NEA (1800-2255 632) or submit your enquiries electronically via the Online Feedback Form or myENV mobile application.
MEES for water-cooled chilled water systems in industrial facilities
1 The Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards (MEES) will cover electrically-driven, water-cooled chilled water systems  in industrial facilities with a total installed capacity of 1055 kW (300 RT) or more, which produce chilled water at a temperature of 3°C or higher. Chillers utilising brine or glycol and air-cooled chillers that form part of the water-cooled chilled water system will be exempted.
2 New Industrial Facilities: Water-cooled chilled water systems in a new industrial facility that require Planning Permission (PP) clearance or equivalent on or after 1 December 2020 must conform to MEES:
- One year after the Temporary Occupation Permit (TOP) is issued for a new single-user industrial facility .
- Within three years after TOP or when 80 per cent of occupancy is reached, whichever is earlier, for a new multi-user industrial facility .
3 Existing Industrial Facilities: Water-cooled chilled water systems installed in existing industrial facilities must conform to MEES by the following deadlines:
Type of industrial facility
Industrial facilities regulated under the Energy Conservation Act (ECA)
By 1 December 2025
All other industrial facilities
By 1 December 2029
Operating System Performance
4 Chilled water systems in industrial facilities may be used for space or process cooling. In process cooling, a wide range of chilled water supply temperatures may be used. As temperature has a direct effect on the performance of a chiller, and thus the performance of a chilled water system, the performance standards vary for chilled water systems that operate at different chilled water supply temperatures.
5 The table below displays the MEES for different chilled water supply temperatures.
Chilled water supply temperature
in kWe/kWc (kW/RT)
Energy performance for chilled water supply temperature ≥10 oC to be improved from 0.185 kWe/kWc
at 9oC by 0.003 kWe/kWc for every 1°C increase in chilled water supply temperature
Measurement and reporting requirements
6 To show that the operating chilled water system performance meets the relevant MEES threshold, a permanent measurement and verification (M&V) system must be installed.
7 By the compliance deadline, a report must be submitted to NEA showing that the chilled water system operating performance meets the relevant MEES threshold, and that the M&V system is accurate.
8 After the approval of the first report, companies must report the key performance data of their chilled water systems to NEA on a periodic basis, to demonstrate that the system performance is being maintained.
9 Annually, NEA will review the system operating performance and other key performance data of the chilled water system. NEA may also conduct on-site verification of the accuracy of the M&V system. In the event that a company fails to comply with any of the requirements, the company must take corrective action to ensure compliance.
 A water-cooled chilled water system is a cooling system comprising chillers, chilled water pumps, condenser water pumps and cooling towers that use chilled water as the medium to transfer heat.
 To be rounded up to the nearest whole number.