A Skytrain not-in-use parked at Changi Airport’s train docking station
Being situated near the equator also means that a significant amount of energy is required to cool the airport’s terminals.
Between April 2019 to March 2020, approximately 70% of the airport’s electricity consumption is attributed to air-conditioning and mechanical ventilation (ACMV), and lighting.
Apart from reducing the consumption of these systems and sourcing for energy innovations that can reduce the building’s cooling load, CAG has reacted quickly to the pandemic’s impact by implementing measures across the terminals to consolidate access to dedicated zones whilst ensuring traveller comfort.
With Terminals 1 and 3 operating at less than full capacity and operations at Terminals 2 and 4 suspended, the ACMV systems saw a reduction in the operational cooling load that resulted in energy cost savings of 40-50% compared to pre-COVID times.
In parts of the terminals where human traffic is low, lighting levels were also reduced by up to 50% while ensuring optimal operational efficiency within the terminals.
Leveraging engineering innovations for a more sustainable Changi
Another focus of CAG’s is to seek new and innovative ideas in sustainable construction methods and materials to help reduce the environmental impact of Changi and to provide a better working environment for staff.
An example of this is the utilisation of an innovative construction method during the upgrading of the airport’s drainage network in 2020. Employing a new “pull and rail” method instead of a traditional “open-cut” method, prefabricated segments of culvert drains were pulled underground. This eliminated the need to repeatedly resurface the road above the drain, contributing to a 42% reduction of asphalt used during construction. This was the first time this construction method was used in Singapore on such a large scale.