UGM expert: Government must clarify commitment to achieve energy transition target

Jakarta – Dr. Fahmy Radhi MBA, an energy economist from Universitas Gadjah Mada (UGM) said that one of the causes of not achieving the renewable energy target is the “half-hearted energy transition policy”.

“The policy tends to contradict efforts to accelerate the energy transition, such as the tolerance for the construction of coal-fired power plants,” he said in an official statement on Tuesday, May 14.

Although various efforts have been made, the EBT mix is still far from the target set, Indonesia is on the verge of failing to achieve the energy transition target set by President Joko Widodo.

The EBT mix target of 23 percent by 2025 was not achieved, with realization in 2023 only reaching 12.8 percent. In fact, the Government actually lowered the EBT target to 17 percent by 2025, adding to doubts about the real commitment to achieving this goal.

Until the end of 2020, the primary energy mix for PT Perusahaan Listrik Negara (PLN)’s power plants was still dominated by coal at 57.22 per cent. Meanwhile, renewable energy only reached 12.15 per cent. Efforts to accelerate the energy transition also seem to be constrained by the failure of major programs, such as the bio-diesel and coal gasification projects run by PT Pertamina.

Nevertheless, there have been some successes in the development of renewable energy, especially those carried out by PLN. PLN has successfully completed 28 new EBT plants, and carried out a dedieselization program by building transmission and distribution networks, even to the development of green hydrogen in 2023.

One of the highlighted projects is the Cirata floating solar power plant with a capacity of 192 megawatt peak (MWp). However, efforts to retire coal-fired power plants early still face obstacles such as difficulties in providing funds and technology.

In response to this situation, Dr. Fahmy Radhi urges the President-elect, Prabowo Subianto, to overhaul the energy transition policy that is considered half-hearted. One of them is by requiring the processing of coal, which is a dirty energy source, into clean energy. In addition, the government is also expected to provide convenience and incentives for investors in the development of renewable energy in Indonesia.

Without fundamental policy changes, experts warn that the zero carbon target by 2060 will be difficult to achieve. They emphasized the need for concrete steps and a strong commitment from the government to achieve the goal of a sustainable energy transition. (Hartatik)

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