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Synergy for Sustainable Development and Solar Technical Potential in Gorontalo

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Gorontalo, 26 November 2021- The potential for renewable energy is evenly distributed in all provinces in Indonesia, including in Gorontalo Province. This potential can be utilized by provinces throughout Indonesia as playing their role in reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and creating sustainable economic, social, and environmental benefits in their respective regions.

Gorontalo Province, based on the IESR analysis in the “Beyond 443 GW” has a large technical potential of solar power reaching 11.97 GWp (equal to 17.47 TWh of generated power). The potential for pumped hydro energy storage (PHES) is up to 14.4 GWh. IESR Senior Researcher Handriyanti Diah Puspitarini calculated that assuming a family consists of 4 people, it makes 292,921 households in Gorontalo. If one house requires 1.72 MWh of power, then the total electricity demand in Gorontalo is 503.8 GWh.

“So actually the potential for solar in Gorontalo Province can cover all household electricity needs in Gorontalo,” explained Hardiyanti.

Indeed, to achieve these benefits, Gorontalo provincial government needs to build an ecosystem that allows the development of renewable energy, especially solar energy plants (PLTS) to all regencies As one of the hosts for the 4th Sustainable Regency Festival, Gorontalo Regency, Gorontalo Province has a synergistic effort with the large potential of renewable energy. Gorontalo Regency has been actively promoting sustainable development through the allocation of green budgets and the use of renewable energy that contributes to the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions.

Cokro R Katilie, Head of BAPPEDA ( Development Planning Agency at Sub-National Level) Gorontalo Regency emphasized in his opening speech at the series of Festival Kabupaten Lestari that climate change mitigation efforts need to be carried out more optimally.

“In Gorontalo Regency, there was a flood in early November, (this) became a lesson, although collaboration and environmental efforts (have been carried out), the intensity of the weather (which causes flooding) is higher. Of course, mitigation efforts must be increased,” said Cokro.

Inviting the Institute for Essential Service Reform (IESR) online on the session on Mainstreaming  Technology Innovation in reducing emissions and preserving the environment, dozens of participants from various regions and institutions listened to Marlistya Citraningrum, Manager of Access to Sustainable Energy Program, IESR  talking about rooftop PV mini-grid technology.

Marlistya explained that rooftop PV is a reflection of energy democratization because its potential is spread throughout Indonesia, anyone can use it regardless of strata or profession, installation can be anywhere because it has various types, it can be on the roof, above ground, or floating.

“Furthermore, the installation does not take long and can be done by skilled workers. Equally important, the price of the technology is getting lower,” she explained excitedly.

Marlistya explained that the results of the IESR market survey in Jabodetabek found that 7 out of 10 people said that rooftop solar PV is attractive to them. However, only 8% of the respondents said that rooftop solar PV is relevant to their needs. Their interest in adopting PV mini-grid roofs also varies. Most of it is due to electricity savings and following sustainable lifestyles.

“In Indonesia itself, the development of solar PV has been reassuring, it has shown significant growth. However, there are still problems with getting solar panels,” she said.

Currently, rooftop solar PV service providers are still limited in big cities. She said the future homework is to connect people in whatever place in Indonesia with rooftop PV service providers. IESR is trying to bridge the information gap by building the solarhub.id portal.

“This can be an opportunity by utilizing village funds for renewable energy. BUMDES (Village-Owned Enterprises) can manage the renewable energy business as a provider of solar panels. Certainly, it will be more interesting if the tourist attraction in this place uses renewable and sustainable energy, “she said again.

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