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.

ISEO 2023 Launch: Indonesia Needs Clear Targets and Effective Implementation to Develop Solar Energy

Jakarta, 27 October 2022 – The Institute for Essential Services Reform (IESR) launched the Indonesia Solar Energy Outlook 2023 report. This report was originally part of the Indonesia Energy Transition Outlook (IETO) which has been routinely published every year since 2018. Starting this year, the solar energy section is made in a separate report to provide a more in-depth report on the development of solar energy in Indonesia and the supporting ecosystems that solar energy needs to grow in Indonesia.

Fabby Tumiwa, Executive Director of IESR, in his remarks at the Shine Bright: Advancing G20 Solar Leadership event organized by IESR with the support of Bloomberg Philanthropies, and in collaboration with the International Solar Alliance, and the Indonesian Solar Energy Association, stated that solar energy prices remain competitive despite the existence of increase in the price of raw materials for the manufacture of solar panels. Fabby also emphasized the importance of developing the solar industry for both Indonesia and all G20 countries which are in the spotlight in efforts to reduce global emissions.

“Developing cooperation in solar manufacturing among G20 countries will secure the supply of solar module and cell production, balance systems to meet future demand, and reduce product monopolies.”

On the same occasion, the Minister of Energy and Mineral Resources, Arifin Tasrif, emphasized the need for support from the industry and local solar module manufacturers to meet the requirements for the Local Content Requirement (LCR) considering that Indonesia has mineral materials to make solar modules and batteries.

“Easy access to financing, incentives, and other financing facilities is very important to provide the cost of a feasibility study and increase investment in renewable energy, one of which is solar,” said Arifin.

Ajay Mathur, Director General of the International Solar Alliance, said that to make solar energy the energy of choice, three things that must be taken as strategic steps. First, providing the latest information, analysis, advocacy, and establishing relationships with various parties. Second, providing adequate resources so that solar energy investments ‘flow’ is important because investors will assess and weigh various situations that can affect the return on their investment capital.

“ISA approved the creation of a solar energy financing facility that provides risk capital guarantees,” explained Ajay.

Ajay added, the third step, it is important to build the capacity and capability of various parties who handle the development of solar energy such as policymakers, operators, and regulators.

Daniel Kurniawan, the lead author of the Indonesia Solar Energy Outlook 2023 report, presented some findings from this report. One of them is that although solar energy is getting more and more attention until Q3 2022 only 0.2 GWp of solar has been built.

“Based on the 2021-2030 RUPTL, PLN plans to add 3.9 GW of solar energy in 2025, of which 2.45 GW will be procured under the IPP scheme and 1.45 GW will be auctioned directly by PLN. However, until Q3 2022 there are only eight IPP projects with a capacity of 585 MWp,” explained Daniel.

Presidential Decree number 112/2022 which was issued in September 2022 is expected to provide fresh air for the energy transition in Indonesia, at least with regulations on renewable energy prices and instructions to accelerate the termination of coal-fired power plants.

To encourage the acceleration of the use of solar energy, the ISEO 2023 report recommends some steps, including PLN which can arrange a schedule for renewable energy auctions, especially solar for 2023. Previously, the government had to set ambitious and binding targets for renewable energy in certain years, for example 30% in 2025-2030, 90% in 2040, and 100% in 2050. With a target like this PLN must make room for solar energy in the PLN network.

“The IEA analysis shows that the Java-Bali and Sumatra systems can accommodate 10% of solar energy from their total capacity with flexible PLTU operations,” explained Daniel.

Although the system is technically capable of handling solar energy variability, the main challenge in realizing greater solar penetration is contractual inflexibility (particularly due to the take-or-pay clause in the coal plants power purchase agreement with the IPP as well as the primary energy supply contract for gas).

Daniel also added, considering the readiness of the domestic solar manufacturing industry, the percentage of Local Content Requirement (LCR) needs to be adjusted for a limited time, for example until 2025. While preparing the domestic manufacturing industry for decarbonization.

Finally, ISEO 2023 also recommends that PLN review the policy on limiting the installation of rooftop solar PV.

Henriette Faergemann, Environment, Climate Action EU Delegates to Indonesia and Brunei Darussalam, stated that it is important to create an ambitious and consistent energy transition policy to provide a strong signal to investors and financial institutions so that they are interested in participating in financing the energy transition.

“There is good progress for Indonesia in formulating its policies, but there are still many things that need to be done and improved if Indonesia wants this (energy transition) to happen quickly,” Henriette explained.

Joshua Wyclife, Chief of Operations International Solar Alliance, agrees that structural change is needed and this change starts with policy. Joshua also stated that this ISEO report is one way to increase awareness for various parties about the current situation of solar energy development in Indonesia.

“One way to maximize solar potential in Indonesia is to increase the level from awareness to advocacy, by various parties through various ways such as workshops, facilitating training programs with existing resources,” said Joshua.

Meanwhile, Rahmat Mardiana, Director of Electricity, Telecommunications, and Information at the National Planning Agency (Bappenas), stated that this report would be studied further considering that Bappenas is currently preparing national development planning documents such as the RPJP and RPJM, one of which is about the energy transition strategy.

“With our commitment to achieve the RUEN, Paris Agreement, and NZE targets, of course we must provide reliable electricity at affordable prices, and gradually fossil power plants will be replaced by renewable energy,” explained Rahmat.

Dewanto, Vice President of Various Energy PLN, said that PLN continues to support the development of renewable energy.

“The Business Plan (RUPTL) is a tangible manifestation of PLN’s support for new and renewable energy. According to the RUPTL, until early 2023 PLN will auction almost 1 GW of renewable projects,” Dewanto said.

ISEO 2023 Launch: Encourage The Use of Solar Energy in Indonesia

Jakarta, October 27, 2022 – The use of solar energy in Indonesia needs to be accelerated. Clear rules, support for the solar PV component production industry, and capacity building in response to human resources needs in the solar energy sector also need to be prepared.

According to data from Indonesia Solar Energy Outlook (ISEO) 2023, the installed capacity of Solar PV has increased from 43.9 MWp in 2021 to 63.5 MWp in September 2022. This number is relatively small compared to other ASEAN countries, especially Vietnam, which already belongs to the Gigawatt order.

Senda Hurmuzan Kanam, Chair of Electrical Survey and Testing Center, MEMR, measures that the installed capacity of PLTS in Indonesia is still in its early stages, around 200 MW-400 MW. He stated that Indonesia needs a closer look at Vietnam, which can install about 10 – 20 GW of solar panels annually.

“Compared to Vietnam, Indonesia is far behind. We need to look for demand opportunities for renewable energy, especially solar PV. Currently, we have an incentive program for rooftop solar systems under a Sustainable Energy Fund (SEF) grant to attract more electricity consumers to use rooftop PV mini-grid,” Senda said at the Advancing G20 Solar Leadership event and the launch of the ISEO 2023 report organized by the Institute for Essential Services Reform (IESR) with support from Bloomberg Philanthropies, and in collaboration with the International Solar Alliance, and the Indonesian Solar Energy Association.

Similarly, a member of the National Energy Council (DEN), Herman Darnel Ibrahim, mentioned that solar energy development in Indonesia is still running slowly and relatively stagnant. He argues that Indonesia needed a more transparent plan to achieve the target of 23% of the renewable energy mix by 2025 by utilizing solar power.

“At least the Electricity Supply Business Plan (RUPTL) needs to show the solar energy program, all renewable energy clearly, and mention its potential locations. Currently, the existing RUPTL only discusses all renewable energy nationally and does not mention its possible areas in detail. Moreover, the government can calculate the new economy by location and network costs. So it’s better to build a resource inventory first,” Herman stated.

Although there are several challenges to accelerating solar energy, Andhika Prastawa, Chairman of the Indonesian Solar Energy Association (AESI), said solar panel production continues to grow under certain conditions. For example, Indonesia provides a clear incentive for consumers to use domestic solar panels rather than abroad. In addition, Andhika stated that there are two ecosystems to accelerate solar energy: the utilization ecosystem and the industrial ecosystem. 

“Ecosystem utilization, namely solar power, can be used in large or isolated systems. So we can extend access to electricity to all rural communities in the country. Then, the growth of this industrial ecosystem is closely related to its utilization ecosystem. To grow the industrial ecosystem, a market that can absorb solar modules is needed,” Andhika explained.

Meanwhile, Anthony Utomo, Deputy Chairperson of the Indonesian Solar Energy Association (AESI), explained that solar PV is necessary because of the decarbonization movement and the net zero emissions (NZE) approach. However, there are several challenges to intensifying solar energy.

“There are two challenges facing Indonesia. The user’s (customers) readiness to use solar PV, so we need consistent and massive education. It aligns with the National Energy Master Plan (RUEN) 2017, which became a shared consensus. It mandates a reduction in energy intensity, containing 30% of government buildings being encouraged to use solar PV, 25% luxury homes, and industrial downstream. Second, the competencies of solar PVinstallation personnel to develop the electrical system installation of the solar power plant. There is a need to provide solar preneurs or green MSMEs so that they can welcome the phenomenon of using rooftop solar PV in all regions, ” Anthony said.

The Institute for Essential Services Reform has consistently noted the progress and challenges of developing solar energy in the energy transition framework in the Indonesia Energy Transition Outlook (IETO). However, in 2023, IESR launched a progress report on solar power in Indonesia separately in the Indonesia Solar Energy Outlook (ISEO) 2023.

Seeing the Opportunities and Challenges of the Decentralized Energy Transition

Bali, 30 August 2022 – Local governments and communities can be the catalyst for accelerating the energy transition. The decentralized energy transition requires a relatively shorter time because it is carried out on a small scale and the impact can be directly felt and seen by the community.

Ganjar Pranowo, Governor of Central Java, in the G20 parallel seminar “Decentralizing energy transition: Advancing the role of the community and subnational government” (30/8), that in the context of developing renewable energy, asymmetric decentralization is needed, which means that each local government is given sufficient space to design the development of renewable energy according to the potential and situation of the region.

“The potential for energy independence in these villages, from a business perspective, is not good because the scale is relatively small for a business scale, but if we don’t make examples such as installing 20 kWp solar PV for 8 MSMEs in Jepara, off grid solar PV for water pumps, or micro-hydro with a capacity of 15 kWp that electrifies 75 households, by really utilizing the potential that exists locally, it will not be realized, so we need the courage to change,” said Ganjar.

Ida Ayu Giriantari, Special Staff for the Governor of Bali, stated that the community, especially the Balinese, have a high enough awareness to protect the environment and switch to more environmentally friendly energy sources.

“Clean energy has been the foundation of Bali’s life and vision for development since the beginning and was stated in Pergub 45/2019, when the central government made clean energy policies nationally, we felt that there was support from the central government,” he said.

In March 2022, the Governor of Bali issued a circular letter for government offices and tourism buildings to install rooftop solar. This is one of the ways to pursue Bali’s target of achieving carbon neutral status by 2045.

“With the cooperation of all stakeholders and the community, I am optimistic that we can achieve Bali Net Zero Emission 2045,” said Ida Ayu.

Passed by the Batang Hari river, Jambi province began to introduce the use of renewable energy in the 2000s including hydropower, wind (Tanjung Barat and Timur), and solar.

“Currently we are preparing an integrated energy consumption assistance program for kitchens and households, or what we call the Boenda program. We will launch it soon,” explained Abdullah Sani, Deputy Governor of Jambi at the same event.

Sani continued that the Jambi provincial government is committed to working with the central government and the private sector to develop energy transition because the available resources are considered abundant but still need to transform them into usable energy.

Bob Saril, Director of Commerce and Customer Management of PT PLN stated that his party as an electricity provider in Indonesia has designed an energy transition scheme through the RUPTL (General Plan for the Provision of Electricity) based on renewable energy.

“In the current RUPTL, the share of renewable energy reaches 52%, this is the first step in the transition we are planning. That after 2022, we will no longer add new coal commitments,” said Bob.

Chrisnawan Anditya, Head of the Planning Bureau of the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources, stated that the differences in NRE potential in various regions are a technical challenge as well as a great opportunity for our energy system.

“This allows the sharing of NRE-based energy, when the area experiences energy abundance or scarcity. In order for this to happen, an integrated power system is needed (SmartGrid and SuperGrid),” explained Chrisnawan.

The energy sector is expected to become a major emission contributor if not taken seriously. Togap Simangunsong, Expert Staff to the Minister of Home Affairs for Social Affairs and Inter-Agency Relations, the Ministry of Home Affairs, explained that his party continues to monitor the provinces in drafting the RUED (Regional Energy General Plan) as a derivative of the National Energy General Plan (RUEN).

“27 out of 34 provinces already have Regional Regulations on RUED and a number of provinces are still in the process with various progress for the preparation of their RUED,” said Togap.

Fabby Tumiwa, Executive Director of IESR reminded regional leaders to align the RUED with the RPJMD so that the policies made are in line so that their implementation can run smoothly. He also emphasized the importance of community participation in energy transition initiatives in the regions

“The community can participate in investing in renewable energy by installing rooftop solar panels in their respective homes. Local governments can also contribute by allocating budgets to this sector. If domestic investment grows well, foreign investment will be more interested to chip in, ” explained Fabby.

IESR: The Use of Rooftop PV in the Business Sector Brings Three Benefits at Once

Semarang, June 14, 2022 – The growing popularity of the climate change issue and environmental sustainability is slowly affecting people’s consumption and spending patterns in various fields from household needs to tourism. A global survey conducted by The Economist shows an increase in spending on sustainable products from year to year from 2016 – 2020. Not only about the product materials/materials that are used as a reference, but also the emissions generated during production. Energy use is a crucial factor that determines the sustainability of a product/service.

Handriyanti Diah Puspitarini, a senior researcher at the Institute for Essential Services Reform, explained that if a business entity uses renewable energy such as rooftop solar panels, there will be three benefits at the same time.

“There are three benefits that can be obtained simultaneously by using rooftop PV, namely energy efficiency, increased reputation (branding) through sustainable business practices, and operational cost savings, which means that the profit obtained will be maximized,” explained Handriyanti.

Handriyanti continued, Indonesia has enormous solar energy potential reaching more than 7,000 GW. In Central Java itself, there is a market potential of 9.8% early followers and early adopters in the business and commercial sectors.

“This group (early followers and early adopters) is a group who already has basic information about rooftop PV, and wants to install it but still needs to be given more comprehensive information and given more attractive financing options such as installment schemes with long tenors and competitive interest,” she said.

Head of the Central Java Energy and Mineral Resources Office, Sujarwanto Dwiatmoko, expressed his support for the business, tourism agency and hotels that are committed to using clean energy, reducing water usage and doing energy efficiency systematically.

“This support and appreciation will be in the form of a certificate that we will hand over to businesses that systematically perform resource efficiency (energy and water) as well as those who install rooftop PV or use renewable energy,” he explained.

Local supermarket network, Aneka Jaya, has seen electricity bill savings of 50-60% per month after installing a rooftop solar power plant in one of its self-service units.

“Due to the pandemic, we have to find ways to be more efficient, one of which is reducing electricity bills. After we found out about PV rooftop, we started surveys and looking for vendors,” explained Indaru Imam Susilo, manager of Aneka Jaya Kalipancur.

Imam continued that his party took a performance-based renting financing scheme in which he did not issue an initial investment, but paid monthly based on the energy produced for 15 years (according to the agreed contract).

Cahyo Danu Sukmo, Sub Coordinator of Tourism Business Development, Youth, Sports and Tourism Office of Central Java Province, said that currently the tourism sector, especially in Central Java, is moving towards sustainable tourism, means the tourism activity is not exploitative and prioritizes the empowerment of local communities.

“We are also starting to focus on developing tourist villages with green tourism guidelines, including following the energy supply guidelines,” explained Cahyo.

The government through the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources keeps encouraging the use of renewable energy, especially rooftop PV in various sectors. Solar energy has even been included in the national strategic program to pursue the renewable energy mix target of 23% by 2025.

“One of our supports is through the latest policy, namely the Minister of Energy and Mineral Resources Regulation No. 26/2021 which regulates PLN customers who install rooftop PV,” said Mustaba Ari Suryoko, Coordinator of Business Supervision Services for Various New Energy and Renewable Energy, Directorate General of EBTKE, Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources.

Although until now the implementation of the Minister of Energy and Mineral Resources Decree 26/2021 is still facing obstacles, Mustaba stated that his party continues to evaluate and find a win-win solution so that the regulation can be implemented.

Mustaba also stated that his party is collaborating with the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) to provide incentives for rooftop PV new customers through Sustainable Energy Funds (SEF) grants.

Yovi Rahmawati, from UNDP, explained that this grant is valid for new rooftop PV customers, who start installing in November 2021.

“This program itself is still running until November 2022, the application is submitted via the website and the team will verify it,” said Yovi.

Jateng Solar Series – Green Healthcare Forum: Central Java Encourages Solar PV Adoption in Health Facilities

Jakarta, 26 April 2022- The Ministry of Health through The Directorate of Health Service Facilities, Directorate General of Health Services has issued Guidelines for Environmentally Friendly Hospitals (Green Hospitals) in Indonesia in 2018. Central Java has a high potential power output for solar energy. To that end, the development of policies, benefits, and financing schemes for rooftop solar power plants available for health facilities are discussed in the “Rooftop Solar Energy for Health Facilities Sector” Webinar. This activity was held in collaboration with the MEMR of Central Java Province and IESR which took place online.

Opening the discussion, Mustaba Ari Suryoko, Coordinator of Various NRE Services and Business Supervision, Directorate General of EBTKE, Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources stated that Indonesia has at least 3 targets, namely 23% renewable energy in 2025, emission reduction in 2030, and net zero emission in 2060. According to him, The target for penetration of renewable energy, especially rooftop solar power plants, which is 3.6 GW until 2025 is quite high, but its implementation is still minimal. 

Several efforts have been made by the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources to accelerate the use of solar energy, especially in the health sector, including the issuance of the Rooftop pv Regulation to accelerate the penetration of rooftop PV, increased socialization to the health sector, such as the construction of rooftop PV at the Bali Mandara Hospital 2020, with a capacity of 100 kWp. Ari informed that currently, around 15 hospitals in Indonesia have installed rooftop solar panels.

“Low carbon development has become a global agreement, and we are part of it. The health sector has a fairly large energy demand, and there are units that have to operate 24 hours a day. For that, energy efficiency is needed, not only saving, but also producing and using energy effectively and efficiently,” said Sujarwanto Dwiatmoko, Head of MEMR of Central Java Province.

Sujarwanto said that energy audits, replacement of energy-efficient lighting systems, as well as non-stop and stop electrical operation line separation needs to be done in the hospital. To support the green hospital, hospitals can use renewable energy, one of them is rooftop solar power. According to Sujarwanto, to optimize the use of rooftop PV, it is necessary to look at the electricity usage needs, such as what tools operate during the day or night and determine which PV system (offgrid/ongrid) will be used. Supporting the energy transition, MEMR of Central Java Province will issue special awards for energy saving and green building efforts. 

Adding, Romadona, Head of the Health Facilities Facilities Team Referrals from the Directorate of Health Service Facilities said that the principles of environmentally friendly hospitals include safe buildings and guarantee patient safety, paying attention to various patient conditions (such as disabled), adapting to medical science developments, saving energy and being environmentally friendly. Romadona explained that the environmentally friendly criteria themselves are divided into two types, namely design and construction, as well as operational criteria. Unfortunately, the application of the criteria was interrupted during the pandemic. 

On the other hand, Marlistya Citraningrum, Sustainable Energy Access Program Manager, IESR mentioned several advantages of solar energy such as its abundant potential and rooftop PV technology that is easily accessible, does not require land, is easy to maintain, and the size can be adjusted to the size of the house, legally on-grid and off-grid. Marlistya said that the average return on investment for rooftop solar power plants in Indonesia for small scale is 10-12 years. 

“Roof PV can last for 25-30 years, and after that it can still be used but with a slightly decreased power,” he said.

Marlistya explained that there are several rooftop PV financing schemes such as cash purchase, installments/credit, and performance-based renting. Marlistya informed that at the Semarang City Hall, the use of Rooftop Solar Power Plants was able to reduce the bill by almost 50% from Rp 13 million to Rp 6.5 million. On the other hand, for a small house, the savings can reach 60%.

The savings in electricity costs of Rp 810 million/year, as well as very easy and minimal PV maintenance is one of the testimonials for the use of 327.6 kWp rooftop PV at Pertamina Hospital Cilacap. Muhidi, Household Sector, Pertamina Cilacap Hospital, said that the installation of rooftop PV in his hospital is an effort of efficiency and savings as well as a form of support for the government to achieve a 23% energy mix by 2025.

Also supporting the development of PV mini-grid in Indonesia, UNDP is working on the Sustainable Energy Fund (SEF) with a total incentive of rooftop PV of Rp 23 billion.

“The scheme is performance based; install it first before submitting an incentive request,” explained Verania Andria, UNDP’s Senior Advisor for Sustainable Energy.

Verania explained that the requirements for submitting incentives, namely PLN customers who have installed or are currently installing rooftop PV as of December 1, 2021, can only submit one application, does not apply to PV funded by the government through the APBN/APBD, and installation is not done alone because UNDP wants to guarantee quality. installation of installed roof PV mini-grid. In addition, capital applications can be accessed through the application and the online site https://isurya.mtre3.id. Furthermore, she stated that so far, incentives of Rp. 155 million have been distributed.

Ing. Eko Supriyanto, General Chair of the Indonesian Hospital Engineering Association who was present on the same occasion informed that green healthcare consists of various aspects; One of them is energy conservation and emission reduction. He said that digitizing hospitals was important to overcome several issues in hospitals such as building architecture, waste treatment methods, the use of energy that is not environmentally friendly, and the over-use of electrical energy. One example of digitization, explained Eko, is the Smart Integrated Electricity System, a digital system that can monitor planning and energy use in hospitals.

“The hospital is still looking at the economic side of installing rooftop solar panels. Hospitals also have service priorities that prioritize patients and health services, so the decision to use rooftop solar panels requires comprehensive consideration. With the technology and cost of rooftop PV, now is the time for hospitals to start considering installing rooftop PV” said Eko.

Looking for Funding Schemes and Readiness of Solar PV Project Development

Workshop Financing Solar Energy - Indonesia Solar Summit

Jakarta, 20 April 2022– The issue of financing is still one of the big obstacles in developing renewable energy such as rooftop solar power plants in Indonesia. There is a large gap between the government’s agenda to accelerate solar penetration and access to funding for both developer and household projects. Difficult access to funding can also be a challenge for the development of solar energy in Indonesia.

Enthusiasm to develop solar energy is growing rapidly in Indonesia. At the Indonesia Solar Summit 2022, at least 31 parties are committed to installing solar PV with a capacity of up to 2,300 MW. The availability of cheap financing mechanisms can support the achievement of these commitments.

Elvi Nasution, Director of Solutions Initiatives, explained that there is one financing scheme that is not widely available, namely project financing. Project financing is limited financing of a new project that will be carried out through the establishment of a new company (separate from the existing company). The project finance provider can be a bank or a special financial institution (special mission vehicle).

“Compared to Malaysia, Thailand and the Philippines, project financing in Indonesia is relatively expensive. The contributing factors include government guarantees, the amount of debt, and the structure of the electricity business which is currently monopolized by PLN, so developers often encounter difficulties because there is only one offtaker in Indonesia,” explained Elvi.

Jagjeet Shareen, Assistant Director of General International Solar Alliance, in the same forum saw the importance of the role of financial institutions such as banks to participate in accelerating solar penetration.

“Providing training to bank employees is important to make them understand the character of solar business and calculate the financing risk for it. The cost of installing solar PV  may still be relatively expensive, but it’s actually not that expensive because the cost of solar continues to decline,” he said.

Jagjeet shared India’s experience in providing massive training to bank employees which had a significant impact because the bank then became more familiar with PV rooftop projects, their risks and development opportunities.

Both Elvi and Jagjeet agreed that in order to accelerate the penetration of PV rooftop, synergies from various parties, such as financial institutions, need to study the financing structure based on the conditions and potential in each location.

PLN as the single offtaker in Indonesia also needs to transform its business model so that it is relevant to the current situation and in the future where renewable energy will have a larger portion. Especially for solar development, PLN needs to make regular auction plans and finalize the development plan (pipeline). Good and clear project planning will increase the confidence of investors and financial institutions to fund a PV rooftop project for instance.

Prospective users of rooftop solar power plants are more or less aware of the situation of developing solar energy in Indonesia, which still needs a lot of improvement. Erwin Kasim, one of the participants of the Financing Solar Energy Indonesia Solar Summit 2022 workshop, asked about the minimum subsidy for initial installation costs for households who want to install rooftop PV and what schemes can be considered to relieve potential PV rooftop customers.

The bank, as the party that is expected to provide a solution to this initial cost problem, emphasizes the government’s role in making policies that are friendly to all parties in the development of this rooftop solar power plant.

“The use of solar requires government intervention to create financing schemes, protect banks from repayment failures, and incentives for customers,” said a representative of Bank Rakyat Indonesia (BRI) who attended the same forum.

The government’s role in issuing a customer-friendly rooftop PV  financing policy is highly expected. Because at this time, financing through the bank occurs because of a business-to-business agreement between the developer and the bank without any special policy from the government that regulates the financing of rooftop solar power plants by the bank.