Turning to the sun - more Indonesian companies instal solar power

Solar energy is abundant, and evenly distributed throughout Indonesia. - The Jakarta Post/ANN

JAKARTA (Xinhua): Ciputra Group, a leading Indonesian property developer, has been putting solar panels on its houses and office buildings since five years ago. Once well ahead of the trend, many companies in Indonesia are now catching up with Ciputra in their endeavours to reduce the use of fossil fuels.

The roof of the Ciputra World II Building in Jakarta's Kuningan Central Business District has solar panels with a capacity of 13.4 kWp, enough to power more than 340 homes.

"Solar power is best for our purposes," Harun Hajadi, Managing Director of Ciputra Group, told Xinhua on Sunday (Nov 28).

"We're not just interested in green buildings, we ultimately want to cut costs."

"Effective solar photovoltaic systems take up a lot of space and the conversion rate is still low," Hajadi said, "but the technology will improve, and so will the conversion rate."

Last September, Indonesian drinking water company Danone-AQUA installed 2,112 kWp of solar panels on the roof of its factory in West Java. This was the company's fourth location to have solar energy installed since 2017.

"We now have a total installed capacity of 6.2 MWp," Danone Indonesia's Vice President General Secretary Vera Galuh Sugijanto said. This is almost half of its target to set up solar panels with a total capacity of up to 15 MWp in its 21 factories by 2023.

At least 40 companies have installed rooftop power panels till now, bringing the total capacity to 42.39 MW. Indonesia plans to reach 4.68 GW of solar power through the state electricity company PLN by 2030, with 3.6 GW through other ways by 2025.

The government's target is to be 23 per cent renewable by 2025 and 31 per cent by 2050, Director of New and Renewable Energy at the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources, Chrisnawan Anditya, said.

The country has huge renewable energy potential, up to 3,684.4 GW, derived from solar, hydro, marine, geothermal, wind, and biological energy sources. Up to 3,294.4 GW could come from solar power.

The current installed capacity of renewable energy only reaches 10.89 GW, about 0.3 percent of the potential, said Anditya. There is still plenty of space for its utilization in the national energy system, he added.

"Compared to other energy sources, solar energy is abundant, and evenly distributed throughout Indonesia. Installation is also very fast -- only 12 to 18 months, and the cost is very competitive," Anditya specifically said.

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