Mapping the technical potential of renewable energy in Indonesia


Indonesia is not only the most populated country in Southeast Asian but also possesses enormous renewables potential, which is essential to achieve the Net Zero 2060 vision. The figure summarizes three years of research conducted by Jannis Langer, a Ph.D. candidate from Delft University of Technology, on renewable resource mapping in Indonesia.

Langer’s research has been published in a series of articles in Energy, Renewable Energy and iScience. The map shows the technical potential in Indonesia for four renewable energy technologies, namely solar PV, onshore and offshore wind, as well as Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion (OTEC), a promising early-stage technology that utilize the heat of ocean water to generate electricity.

The renewable resources are mapped, taking into account constraints such as nature conservation zones, areas prone to natural catastrophes like earthquakes, the urban environment, and various others.

Despite these constraints, Indonesia's renewable energy resources are substantial, totaling approximately 20,000 TWh per year. This is roughly 75% of the electricity consumed by the entire world in 2019 and can meet Indonesia's projected electricity demand in 2050 5 to 21 times.

But most of these resources are not located at places where electricity demand is high. One way to address this could be to connect Indonesia's islands through sub-sea power transmission cables. These cables can transport renewable electricity to the locations where it is needed.

Indonesia’s president Joko Widodo also drew attention to its vast potentials earlier, pointing out that the country possesses the geothermal potential of 24,000 MW, 95,000 MW of hydropower from 4,400 rivers, 169,000 MW from solar panels, and 68,000 MW of wind power.

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