Industry Needs to Switch From Coal To Renewable Energy to For Acceptance Its Products

Press Release

Jakarta, March 21, 2022

Not only in the power generation sector, but the transition into renewable energy also takes place in the manufacturing sector. The climate change that is taking place due to increasing concentrations of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gasses has occurred globally. The industrial sectors that use the most energy are the food and beverage, fertilizer and chemicals, and cement industries. This means that these industries generate a huge amount of carbon emissions. Some of the companies in this sector also have switched to using renewable energy.

Nickel industry in North Molucca (Photo: Rabul Sawal)

In Indonesia, coal is the most used fossil energy source, compared to other sources of energy, with 38% contributions to national energy in 2021.

Siti Shara, Researcher for Climate Finance and Energy of AEER Association, said that the shifts to renewable energy by industry should be done significantly, not just as greenwashing. The companies that have not made the transition towards renewable energy are risking their product’s public image.

The AEER Association notes that this transition has occurred in various sectors. In the food and beverage sector, Danone-Aqua (Danone Indonesia), the largest beverage company in Indonesia, has built 4 roofs Solar Power Plant throughout 2018-2021 and is targeting the installation of solar panels in 21 Danone-Aqua factories in Indonesia with a total capacity of 15 MW in 2023. In the fertilizer and chemicals sector, PT Chanda Asri Petrochemical Tbk has built solar panel installations in 2019 and continued with the addition of solar panels in 2021. There is also PT Pupuk Kaltim that also install a solar power plant with a rooftop on-grid system in 2022. In the cement industries, there are PT Semen Padang and PT Semen Tonasa which are not dependent on coal energy. They generate electricity from solar power plants in their power plants.

Several other industries also took action and negotiated acceleration in energy transformation from fossil-based fuel towards renewable energy. However, this number is still far below the number of the industries that have not taken steps towards clean energy. If the five largest food companies in Indonesia – namely PT Indofood CBP Sukses MakmurTbk, PT Sido Muncul Tbk, PT Akasha Wira International Tbk, and PT Tiga Pilar Sejahtera Food Tbk – built solar power plants with the same capacity as Danone Indonesia, this would reduce carbon emissions by more than 83000 tons of CO2/year.

In the fertilizer sector, there is PT Pupuk Indonesia, the largest fertilizer and chemical producer in Indonesia has 9 subsidiaries that have not yet switched to environmentally-friendly energy. They still use fossil-based energy for their electricity. In addition, PT Lotte Chemical Titan Nusantara, PT Trans Pacific Petrochemical Indotama (TPPI), PT Kaltim Pasifik Amoniak, and PT Lautan Luas Tbk as a leading industry have not changed their energy sources to green energy.

Although 2 subsidiaries of PT Semen Indonesia have made an energy transition, there are still other subsidiaries that have not transitioned from coal energy. PT Semen Indonesia controls 53,1% of the national cement market. PT Indocement Tunggal Prakarsa Tbk (INTP) and PT Semen Jawa is the same.

Siti Shara added, using coal energy has bad environmental impacts and causes economical losses. The best option is to replace coal-based energy with clean energy. The industrial sector can achieve energy efficiency to reduce the environmental impact. We urge the companies in the industrial sector that is not using renewable energy yet to take actual steps to remove coal from their sources of energy. The industrial sector has had to abandon dirty energy sources that damaging the environment badly. Economically, building a new renewable energy power plant is cheaper than operating a new coal-fired power plant. The industrial sector can also reduce the cost of environmental countermeasures due to coal emissions. This is part of efforts to build a sustainable economy, improve the quality of life, and save the earth from the climate crisis.

Environments Organizations Urge to Stop Coal Mining Expansion to be Part of The Post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework

A Press Release Issued by AEER, Jatam East Kalimantan, Kanopi Hijau Bengkulu

The Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) is preparing The Post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework. The framework’s target is expected to be achieved in 2050 with milestones in 2030. This framework continues The Aichi Biodiversity Targets that have been designed in the previous decade which are failed to achieve the global targets in saving biodiversity.

Three environmental organizations argue that Indonesia can contribute to the current global biodiversity initiative by stopping the expansion of mining production areas and revoking exploration mining permits.

Massive coal mining activities in Kalimantan damage the biodiversity on the island. Mining activities such as land clearing, excavation of topsoil, and removal of overburden harm landscape-scale and disrupt the ecological processes around the area. The destruction of ecological processes will reduce the wildlife habitat and reduce the biodiversity of the local area.

Based on the study by the Association for Ecological Action and People’s Emancipation (AEER) using data on the biodiversity of the Island of Kalimantan and data on mining activities on Kalimantan, it was found that mining activities on the island pose a significant threat to biodiversity. Various protected species – either according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) or according to the Ministry of Environment and Forestry (KLHK) – are threatened by mining activities carried around wildlife habitats. In addition, various ecosystems that have an important role as habitats for wildlife – such as dryland forests and mangrove forests – are threatened with degradation due to mining activities around these ecosystems. This happens because the location of mining activities is close to the important ecosystems that support wildlife and human activities in the vicinity. Several important species affected by the mining activities in Kalimantan include Pongo pygmaeus (Borneo orangutan), Sphyrna lewini (hammerhead shark), Helarctos malayanus (sun bear), and Nasalis larvatus (proboscis monkey).

Pradarma Rupang, Dynamist of East Kalimantan Jatam , stated that mining activities destroy biodiversity through degradation and reduction of wildlife habitat. The energy transition from coal to clean and environmentally friendly energy will stop coal mining activities, land conversion, and global climate change. Biodiversity, as well as the benefits provided by it, are very beneficial for the sustainability of human life. However, habitat degradation and extinction that threaten global biodiversity will continue if coal production is not reduced

Muhammad Iqbal Patiroi, Coordinator of the Climate and Biodiversity Program of the AEER Association, stated that global biodiversity loss increased by a thousand times compared to the available fossil record and could increase up to ten times in the future, according to Millennium Ecosystem Assessment. The assessment from IPBES (Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services) in 2021, at least 75% of the world’s land area has altered significantly and 35% of the world’s species are threatened with extinction, which is also reflected in the state of the biodiversity of the Kalimantan.

Ali Akbar, Director Executive Board of Indonesia Green Canopy, stated that the global community should take steps to stop the threat of extinction that has occurred globally. The Aichi Biodiversity Targets that agreed in 2011 and are valid until 2020 have failed to encourage the global community to slow down the rate of decline in global biodiversity. The new framework is needed to continue the conservation spirit that has been promoted through the Aichi Biodiversity Targets while taking into account the results and shortcomings of the previous framework. With improvements to the design of the new framework for saving biodiversity, it is hoped that the global community and policymakers will be able to fulfill the commitments that will be mutually agreed upon. Stopping the expansion of coal mining production areas is an important strategy.