Promising bioenergy potential, equivalent to 56.97 GW of electricity

Jakarta – Indonesia’s bioenergy potential offers great opportunities as a future energy source, equivalent to 56.97 Giga Watts (GW) of electricity, according to the Special Staff of the Minister of Energy and Mineral Resources (EMR) for the Strategy to Accelerate the Implementation of Transitional Energy and Energy Infrastructure Development, Ego Syahrial.

He said bioenergy has the potential to replace fossil fuels in various sectors, such as transport, power, industry and households. The utilisation of bioenergy, especially through biomass products, is considered a more sustainable energy source and is expected to improve national electrification and energy security.

“By 2060, Indonesia plans to build more than 700 GW of renewable energy plants, with 60 GW of them coming from bioenergy power plants,” said Syahrial, in a written statement.

He added that in addition to being used for power generation, biomass will also be optimised through the biomass co-firing programme in existing Coal Fired Power Plant (CFPP). This co-firing programme has started since 2020 with the biomass mix rate varying from 1% to 15%, depending on the type of boiler and the availability of raw materials.

“Biomass energy co-firing will be implemented in 113 units of steam (coal-powered) power plants (PLTU) owned by PLN in 52 locations with a total capacity of 18,664 MW. Various types of biomass, such as sawdust, wood chips, and palm oil waste, will be used with mixing levels ranging from 5-15%,” Syahrial said.

According to him, the purpose of using biomass in conjunction with existing power plants is to increase the efficiency of electricity supply, increase the share of renewable energy in the national energy portfolio, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and support the greening of power plants more quickly.

“By 2023, this cofiring programme will be implemented in 42 additional locations. The project is expected to generate around 2,740 GWh of green energy and use around 2.2 million tonnes of biomass,” Syahrial said.

As of the first half of this year, the co-firing programme has been implemented at 36 sites and has generated 325 GWh of green energy, reducing emissions by 321 ktCO2. The total biomass used in power generation is about 306 kilo tonnes. To support the development of this co-firing programme, the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources is finalising a ministerial regulation relating to the application of co-firing in existing power plants. (Hartatik)

Banner photo: Biomass fuel for combustion in a thermal power plant. Martin Mecnarowski/

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