Palm Oil Biodiesel is Still the Favorite New Renewable Energy Development in Indonesia

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Doc. / Palm Oil Biodiesel is Still the Favorite New Renewable Energy Development in Indonesia

PALMOILMAGAZINE, JAKARTA – As of 2022, the overall proportion of new renewable energy (NRE) in the energy mix has only reached 14.11%. The government has set ambitious targets, aiming for a 23% share of NRE by 2025 (equivalent to about 45 gigawatts (GW)) and a further increase to 31% by 2050 on a national scale.

Dwi Setyaningsih, the Research and Development Coordinator at the Surfactant and Bioenergy Research Center (SBRC) of the Lembaga Penelitian and Pengabdian kepada Masyarakat Institut Pertanian Bogor (LPPM IPB), emphasized that the current bioenergy capacity stands at 11.5 GW, falling short of the targeted 45 GW. Achieving the goal of 33.5 GW requires concerted efforts and hard work.

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“Biodiesel development is significantly development while other bioenergy development, such as, bioethanol, biomass, co-firing, and biogas are beyond expectation still,’ Dwi said.

Also Read : Ujung Batu Biogas Plant Processes Palm Oil Waste to Support Environmental Sustainability

Dwi continued, biodiesel development scheme in palm oil base with the support of crude palm oil (CPO) and the government’s policies successfully encourage it to other bioenergy potential in this country. But biodiesel sustainability is still haunted by the expensive production costs. This is a challenge to be developed in wider scale.

He also mentioned that it needs special focus to take advantage on palm oil as food product from its available material. “As the alternative, many parties take for advantage on used palm cooking oil to produce biodiesel though it is not popular still,” the lecturer and researcher in IPB said.

Bioethanol development in Indonesia could not run well though it was initiated since 2006 in Malang, East Java Province. Bioethanol is late to be developed because its limited production though there has been mandatory policy E5 (the mixture of 5% ethanol in fossil fuel) in January 2020. “Actually, bioethanol usage 5 – 10% would be very potential to get emission reduction. But we are not there yet,” Dwi said.

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But it is different from biodiesel development within abundant material. Bioethanol materials uses commodity that men need of, such as, corn, cassava, sugarcane, wheat, and others that have sugar and carbohydrate. Meanwhile Indonesia could not get self-sufficiency in the commodities. “It needs to get research, figure out the materials that could be used to produce bioethanol. Some proposed to research, survey niftah, sugar palm, namely because of roomie potential in Java,” he said.

He also said that there have been many researches about advantaging palm oil empty bunch but the implementation was less economic. “But if it is integrated, the result could be more economic because the process would produce other economic derivative products. He also told biomass development in co-firing and biogas that got the same challenges and so far, powerplant development in biomass – base is in the islands where they are in distance with the other islands, such as, Mentawai, West Sumatera Province. “It uses bamboo. The challenges are price and policy. Besides, powerplant uses 5 – 10% biomass only,” he said.

Biogas development faces the same – limited material. The realization is always less the target and even not reached 50% of the target. Dwi thought, the biggest potential to develop biogas is by advantaging palm oil mill effluent (POME). “If it is openly disposed, there would be methane gas (including green-house gas) in big numbers. What we should do is to capture methane gas then change it to be biogas to be powerplant,” Dwi said. (T2)

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