Geothermal energy crucial element for Indonesia to reach 2029 Renewables goal

Geothermal energy crucial element for Indonesia to reach 2029 Renewables goal Unit 1 of Sarulla Geothermal Power Plant, North Sumatra/ Indonesia (source: Ormat Technologies)
Alexander Richter 17 Jan 2021

For Indonesia to reach its renewables target, the government is setting an additional 3,552 MW in geothermal power generation capacity as target to be reached 2025-2029.

As reported by Indonesian outlet Kontan, several energy associations in Indonesia have participated in the work on a draft for the 2020-2029 Electricity Supply Business Plan (RUPTL) by Indonesia’s Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources.

The draft sets out a 23% share of renewables in 2025 and 2029, with geothe

In the draft RUPTL received by, Wednesday (6/1), the government has set a new and renewable energy mix (EBT) target of 23% in 2025 and in 2029. That way, the projected needs for additional capacity for renewable energy-based power plants are as follows: PLTA / PLTM (hydroelectric power) of 7,976 MW, PLTP (geothermal) of 3,552 MW, and other EBT (renewables) generators of 2,763 MW.

Chairman of the Indonesian Geothermal Association (API) Priyandaru Effendi assessed that the projected additional capacity of PLTP of 3,552 MW in the 2020-2029 period is not necessarily sufficient to achieve the 23% EBT mix target.

He said, ideally, the additional geothermal capacity could reach 7,200 MW to meet the NRE mix target of 23% in 2025. In fact, in 2030 the installed capacity of PLTP should reach 10,000 MW. 

“Currently, the installed capacity status of geothermal is around 2,200 MW [actually it stands at 2,133 MW at year-end 2020). To reach the 7,200 MW level, it means there is still a shortage of 5,000 MW, “he said.

Priyandaru argues, the change in the target for adding PLTP capacity in RUPTL 2020-2029 could be due to adjustments after geothermal exploration activities are carried out. “Evaluation is usually done after evaluation. From there, it can be found that the capacity is not on target, “he said.

He also said that the empty space due to the change in the target of increasing PLTP capacity should be filled by other EBT generators. This is so that the 23% NRE mix target can still be achieved.

Apart from that, he also reminded that the projected additional capacity of PLTP in RUPTL 2020-2029 basically reflects on ideal conditions on paper. This means that these projections may not be fulfilled if the classic problems of the geothermal sector have not been resolved, namely uneconomical and competitive electricity tariffs and convoluted regulations.

Source: Kontan