The installation of solar photovoltaics for charity homes in rural Malaysia: A community-based approach

Author(s): Nur Azfahani Ahmad a, Jasrul Jamani Jamian b
a Faculty of Architecture, Planning and Surveying, Universiti Teknologi MARA, Perak Branch, Seri Iskandar Campus, 32610, Perak, Malaysia
b Faculty of Electrical Engineering, Universiti Teknologi Malaysia, Johor Bahru, Johor, Malaysia
International Journal of Smart Grid and Clean Energy, vol. 10, no. 4, October 2021: pp. 278-285
ISSN: 2315-4462 (Print)
ISSN: 2373-3594 (Online)
Digital Object Identifier: 10.12720/sgce.10.4.278-285

Abstract: The adoption of solar panels installation in Malaysia, especially for rural areas are still at the preliminary stage, due to the high cost of the system and the limited access to this technology in the remote region. The availability of this green electricity for public buildings are still limited since the current dissemination of this green energy technology is still funded by the government, resulting in slow progress in the area. In addition, Malaysians also received subsidized power supply which has led to high dependency on this conventional supply from the national electricity provider, Tenaga Nasional Berhad (TNB) which is slowing the progress of solar energy usage. However, since 2014, there has been a gradual increase in electricity tariff that has led to the increasing cost of monthly electricity bills. This has affected many sectors in paying off the utility bill, especially charitable organizations owned by private Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs). The significant impact may occur to private charity homes in rural areas which usually depended on donations from the public. The worst scenario may arise, for instance the power may be cut-off if the electricity bills cannot be paid on time. Therefore, this research paper will try to determine whether solar panel installation through a community-based approach can help the institutions to gain savings from the monthly electricity bill and provide self-sufficient electricity to charity homes. A case study in the region of Perak Tengah in Malaysia was selected to identify if the community-based approach could help to access this green electricity at the selected charity home. An empirical approach showed that the charity home has the potential to save 70% of monthly electricity bills after installing a 2 kilowatts peak (kWp) solar photovoltaics system under a community service program.

Keywords: Charity homes, community-based approach, solar photovoltaics
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