Exclusion of power wheeling scheme inhibits NRE acceleration

Jakarta – Removal of the power wheeling scheme from the problem inventory list of the New and Renewable Energy Bill which was submitted to the parliament (DPR RI) in December 2022 will hamper the acceleration of new renewable energy (NRE), according to lawmakers.

The power wheeling scheme is the shared utilisation of the electric power network. Through this scheme, independent power producers (IPP) can sell electricity directly to the public with a transmission and distribution network owned by PLN.

Deputy Chairman of Commission VII DPR RI, Maman Abdurrahman, said that the power wheeling scheme is important enough to be included in the NRE Bill. He said, without power wheeling, it will impact the government’s progress in boosting the development of clean energy in the country.

Executive Director of the Institute for Essential Services Reform (IESR), Fabby Tumiwa said that power wheeling can increase the demand for renewable energy and encourage community participation in providing renewable energy so as to accelerate the increase in renewable energy, and reduce the burden on PLN’s investment for renewable energy generation. “Utilisation of a network with electric power or power wheeling will provide easier access for consumers to obtain renewable energy supplies at competitive prices,” said Tumiwa.

According to him, this scheme can encourage interest in developing existing renewable energy resources, and does not need to depend on requests from PLN as an off-taker so far. Renewable energy wheeling will also increase the utilisation rate of PLN’s electricity grid, and become a new source of income.

Tumiwa said the Ministry of Finance’s reason that implementation of power wheeling was in conflict with PLN’s oversupply situation was inappropriate. In addition to the oversupply being dominated by fossil energy generators, hampering the achievement of the clean energy mix target, he said, oversupply is also predicted not to last long and will end in 2025 in line with the post-pandemic electricity demand growth rate.

Deon Arinaldo, Manager of the IESR Energy Transformation Program added, it is too early to worry about losses to the state and PLN due to the implementation of the power wheeling scheme. According to him, if this power wheeling scheme is approved in the NRE Bill, it will still need to derive implementing regulations, and in this regulation the potential risk impact on PLN and the state can be managed. (Hartatik)

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