Figure 1. Ir. Rida Mulyana (the current General Director of New Renewable Energy and Energy Conversion, Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources) talked about New and Renewable Energy (NRE) as Indonesia’s future energy. On his right side: Ir. Herry Martinus (Head for West Sumatera Province, Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources), Dr. Surya Darma (Head of Indonesia Renewable Energy Community) and Dr. Jon Respati (Head of Community of Conservation and Energy Efficiency). On his left side: Dr. Evita Legowo (General Director of Oil & Gas, Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources 2006-2008)
The first panel in Mining and Energy Expo 2017 on September 26, 2017, discussed New and Renewable Energy (NRE). In this panel, there were four speakers; (1) Ir. Rida Mulyana (the General Director of New Renewable Energy and Energy Conversion, Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources); (2) Ir. Herry Martinus (Head for West Sumatera Province, Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources); (3) Dr. Surya Darma (Head of Indonesia Renewable Energy Community); and (4) Dr. Jon Respati (Head of Community of Conservation and Energy Efficiency).
Mr. Rida Mulyana (the General Director of New Renewable Energy and Energy Conversion, Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources) opened the session with enthusiasm as the New and Renewable Energy (NRE) is selected as the first topic for the panel session. He hoped that NRE would increase its popularity and people starts to accept NRE as the future energy resource in Indonesia. One thing needs to be adjusted from the people’s mindset, which is that NRE is no longer solely as alternative energy, but as the main energy in the future.
He mentioned three points that need to be achieved for energy independence in Indonesia; (1) Availability, (2) Accessibility, and (3) Affordability (or known as 3A’s). Indonesia’s current condition in the energy sector is still dominated by fossil fuels. However, the Presidential Regulation No. 22/2017 about the General Plan of National Energy plans to make 23% of national energy resources on NRE or about 45 GW by 2025. For the time being, Indonesia has many developed renewable resources, such as hydropower, solar cell, geothermal, wind power and bioenergy in which they are closely monitored by government regulations. From the Directorate General of New Renewable Energy and Energy Conversion, Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources, there are some policies that need to be followed by NRE sectors which are: (1) emphasizing energy as an instrument to embody public welfare with its 3A’s; (2) minimalizing endowment; (3) prioritizing new and renewable resources over any other resources; and (4) simplifying agreement for NRE industries.
West Sumatra could be an example of how the role of local government in renewable energy can give positive outcomes to the local community. Mr. Herry Martinus as a Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources representative for West Sumatera province stated the electrification ratio in West Sumatera had reached 86.42% with 32% itself coming from renewable energy up to now. This number is higher compared to the General Plan of National Energy in 2025 targeting 23% of NRE. Some NREs successfully developed in West Sumatra are hydropower, solar power, bioenergy, and geothermal. Some other forms such as wind power and oceanic wave power are still being studied. With specific NRE regulations to this province, the West Sumatra government had gained energy independence sooner than expected. Henceforth, the local government of West Sumatera will strive to cover a wider distribution area of energy especially in isolated areas and collaborate more with stakeholders to expand renewable energy in West Sumatera.
The last two speakers come from related communities in NRE. Mr. Surya Darma spoke first as the Head of Indonesia Renewable Energy Community. He suggested five important aspects regarding the General Plan of National Energy in 2025. First, the government should grant regulation assurance to renewable energy investors. There should be a complete reference over NRE under Indonesia’s highest constitution; Second, the government should act as soon as possible to fix many complaints from investors due to uncertainty and unstable renewable business environment in Indonesia; Third, Indonesia should start to develop its technology in renewable energy; Fourth, the government should prepare locals to maintain future renewable energy resources; Fifth and the last is to simplify agreements for NRE industries.
Next, Mr. Jon Respati, the Head of Community of Conservation and Energy Efficiency, suggested the importance of energy conservation and efficiency. He said that energy conservation and efficiency should come first before one discussing any form of other energy resources. However, it is important to note that there is a difference between energy conservation (EC) and energy efficiency (EE). The energy conservation purpose is to decrease the consumption so that energy availability will be preserved well for the future, while energy efficiency targets to decrease the total usage without cutting back the consumption itself.