The Potential Role of the Industry and Community Sectors in Accelerating a Just Energy Transition

Semarang, 10 November 2022 – The energy transition has become the focus of many parties lately. It’s not only the government that has the responsibility to provide clean and affordable energy for the entire community, the industrial sector is also starting to switch to clean energy through various efforts. For companies, today’s global product competitiveness is also determined by how the manufacturing process is carried out efficiently and by using sustainable energy sources. The collaborative action of various sectors in the use of renewable energy will support the acceleration of the energy transition on a national level.

To take a closer look at various initiatives from the industry and community sectors, the Central Java Provincial Energy and Mineral Resources Office in collaboration with the Institute for Essential Services Reform organized the “Jelajah Energi Terbarukan” activity on November 10-11 2022. This activity visits several destinations focused on industries and villages that utilize renewable energy potential. This is the second activity, after last June a similar activity was carried out with a focus on different destinations.

The journey started by visiting CV Jaya Setia Plastik, in Demak, to see how the children’s toy industry saves electricity by installing a 470 kWp on-grid rooftop solar PV.

PLTS Atap di CV Jaya Setia Plastik
PLTS Atap di CV Jaya Setia Plastik

“Currently, what is actually installed on our roof is 1,300 kWp, but we have not used the other 470 kWp connected to PLN because we are currently constrained by regulations that limit the installation of rooftop PLTS to a maximum of 15% of the total installed power,” Wahyu representative of CV Jaya Setia Plastik explained. 

Djarum Kretek Oasis, which is located in Kudus, Central Java, also experienced similar challenges. Having several types of green industry initiatives such as the use of biomass boilers, rooftop PLTS, water storage ponds equipped with wastewater treatment facilities, Djarum is still determined to continue to increase its renewable energy capacity.

“Our roof area can still accommodate more solar PV, but due to regulatory limitations we have not been able to add capacity,” said Suwarno, Deputy General Manager Engineering at PT Djarum.

The limitation of rooftop PV capacity has become a concern of various parties because it has become one of the obstacles for consumers, especially the industrial sector, to install or increase the capacity of their rooftop solar. Currently, the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources and PLN are in the process of revising the Minister of Energy and Mineral Resources’ decree no. 26/2021 which regulates the installation of rooftop PV for PLN consumers.

Apart from utilizing solar rooftop, Djarum Oasis has also designed a sustainability scheme for its factory comprehensively covering various aspects, one of which is by utilizing the pruning trees of ‘trembesi’ (Samanea saman) planted on a number of toll roads as part of its CSR, as wood chips for biomass boiler fuel.

The first day’s journey continues towards the waste-to-energy plant Putri Cempo, which is in the Surakarta area. This plant has signed a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with PLN and will be on COD at the end of 2022. Elan Suherlan, Director of PT SCMP (Solo Metro Citra Plasma) explained, Putri Cempo waste-to-energy plant exists to overcome the waste problem in Surakarta city which can no longer be accommodated by the Waste Processing Site. PT SMCP, which won the tender for the plant construction, started its construction in 2021.

“Later Putri Cempo waste-to-energy plant will produce 5 MW of electricity and will be distributed to PLN,” said Elan.

What needs to be observed is a clear calculation of the greenhouse gas emissions resulting from this waste-to-energy plant.

The first day of “Jelajah Energi” was closed by visiting Krendowahono Village, which has utilized biogenic shallow gas for 30 households. Biogenic gas is produced from organic compounds such as plants and grasses that decompose with the help of bacteria. Because it comes from residues of organic compounds, biogenic gasses are generally found in shallow soil layers. Since its amount is relatively small and dispersed, biogenic gas must be compressed (increased pressure) so that it is easy to flow and use.

Several villages in Central Java have quite a lot of potential for biogenic gas, including Gabus Village, in Ngrampal District, Sragen, Rajek Village, in Grobogan, Bantar, and Pegundungan Villages in Banjarnegara, which can be used as an alternative energy source for cooking. The biogenic gas utilization installation is also relatively low and can be used communally.

Solihin, head of RT 6, Krendowahono Village, explained that the discovery of swamp gas started with residents who were going to make a well for a water source but when water was found at a certain depth, the water could actually catch fire.

“After we reported it and a team came to check it, turned out that this gas can be used for households,” he said.

Mrs. Uni, one of the beneficiaries of the swamp gas, admitted that by using the swamp gas she could save on cooking fuel quite significantly.

“Usually in a month I can use 4 of 3 kg of LPG gas, now it’s only 1,” she said while showing her kitchen. Uni admits that she still uses LPG gas as a fuel reserve for cooking because the stove from swamp gas only has 1 burner.

Currently the local communities are designing an operational system for the swamp gas network, starting from the operating hours of the machine, the amount of contributions, and maintenance costs.

COP27: The Race to Zero Emissions in 2050

Egypt, November 9, 2022 – The ambition of countries’ climate commitments to achieve their net zero is crucial by the middle of this century. The earth’s temperature has risen significantly to 1.1 degrees Celsius after pre-industrial levels. Measuring the policies and strategies of countries to achieve zero emissions needs to be done to encourage climate mitigation in line with the Paris Agreement.

Energy Transformation Program Manager of the Institute for Essential Services Reform (IESR) , Deon Arinaldo, at the COP27 side event in Sharm El-Sheik, Egypt, with the theme “Net-0 scenarios and How to Get Them Right” organized by the International Network of Energy Transition Think Tanks (INETTT) explained, Indonesia has realized the urgency of the energy transition. It can be seen from the existence of a low-carbon development strategy from the Ministry of National Development Planning of the Republic of Indonesia. The plan will show significant benefits when Indonesia achieves its conditional Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) target by 2030. It starts with higher economic growth, job creation, and improving the quality of health.

However, Indonesia still provides significant fossil energy subsidies. Deon emphasized that fossil energy subsidy policies differ from efforts to make an energy transition and achieve decarbonization in the middle of this century.

“The Indonesian government’s policy of providing subsidies to shield the public will burden the state budget, especially with rising commodity prices in 2022. Energy subsidies are an “obstacle” to energy transformation, reformulation of energy subsidies is a priority agenda for the government,” said Deon.

This needs to be done by considering the best policy scenario for reducing emissions in the energy system, based on the IESR study entitled “Deep Decarbonization of Indonesia’s Energy System.” Deon recommends three stages of the best policy scenario: bending the greenhouse gas emissions curve and peaking emissions by 2030. Then,  removing a significant share of emissions through energy system transformation by 2045, achieving zero emissions through an increase in green synthetic fuel production, and decarbonize industry sector by 2050.

“With this strategy, achieving zero emissions by 2050 is technically and economically feasible. It opens up opportunities to improve climate policy. Decarbonization efforts have to simultaneously ramp up the overall energy system. This decade (2020-2030) is the critical period,” explained Deon.

Nhien Ngo To, Vietnam Initiative for Energy Transition, said Vietnam had implemented a strategy of reducing emissions to net zero emissions by 2050. The plan sets the overall goal of adapting proactively and effectively. Then, minimize the vulnerability and damage caused by climate change.

“Unfortunately, there are still some challenges to face. Such as inefficient use of energy, high energy intensity, lack of financing, lack of skilled workforce for energy transition, and gaps in the coordination of key stakeholders,” said Nhien Ngo To.

Energy Programme Manager and Climate Finance Lead at GreenCape, Jack Radmore, said South Africa has a reasonably mature policy sector and plans related to a green economy and decarbonization. It could be seen in the national climate change response strategy since 2004, which has been improved and adapted over the years.

“South Africa has established a committee to accelerate the energy transition. The government has also adopted more ambitious emission reduction targets. Considering that 90 percent of electricity in South Africa still depends on coal-fired power plants with more than 600,000 people working in the mining sector,” stated Jack Radmore.

Al Kumba, Energy Transition Director, SHURA, stated that Turkey had taken significant steps in terms of decarbonizing the electricity sector over the past decade. Currently, 50 percent of installed power in Turkey comes from renewable energy. In terms of power generation, around 40 percent comes from renewable energy. However, Turkey’s energy mix is ​​still dependent on fossil fuels, only about 16 percent of which is supplied by renewable energy.

“Decarbonization is important for Turkey. Several concrete steps to realize decarbonization, such as Turkey has ratified the Paris Agreement in October 2021 and announced its ambition to achieve carbon neutrality by 2053. Turkey also has a green action plan to build its ports more environmentally friendly and expand forests and protected areas. Turkey is one of the countries that take the lead in fighting desertification and erosion,” said Al Kumba.