Carbon Capture is Key to Indonesia’s Net-Zero Emissions

In recent years, several energy-efficient technologies have been developed to lessen global carbon emissions and the effects of climate change. But so far, this has not been enough to achieve the high decarbonization goals set forth in the Paris Agreement. Technologies, such as carbon capture, utilisation, and storage (CCUS), can play a vital role in achieving the net-zero targets in Indonesia. CCUS refers to a group of technologies used to capture carbon dioxide from point sources or the atmosphere and transfer it to a permanent geological sequestration or utilization site. 

CCUS is poised to play critical and diversified roles in Indonesia’s clean energy transition, particularly in industry, power production and fuel transformation. Additionally, CCUS offers Indonesia a potential route to abandon fossil fuels and become a regional leader in renewable energy. The National Centre of Excellence on CCS/CCUS, which brought together specialists from the Institute of Technology Bandung and research facilities run by the Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources (Remigas), is credited with helping to advance CCS in Indonesia.

Using carbon capture technology to address the issues brought on by climate change can have several benefits in particular for Indonesia. First, it can primarily lower carbon emissions. Second, given that the appropriate use of carbon captured by suitable technology can increase oil and gas output, it can aid in slowing the decline in the nation’s oil production. By supplying dispatchable low-carbon electricity to complement fluctuating renewables, CCUS can also assist Indonesia in making the optimum use of the current power capacity to fulfil it’s expanding electricity needs in the future outlook i.e. announced pledge scenario (APS)

With the deployment of CCUS beginning after 2030, coal, gas and biomass power stations will likely collect more than 50 Mt CO2 by 2060. In the APS, the share of coal-fired power stations equipped with carbon capture is expected to rise from 6% in 2040 to around 80% in 2060. Coal-fired power stations hold better prospects for CCUS retrofitting than subcritical coal-fired plants. Currently, only 20% of Indonesia’s coal plants are supercritical or ultra-supercritical, but current capacity expansions will likely raise the proportion to over 30% in the next years.

In Indonesia’s transition to clean energy, particularly in industry, electricity generation, and fuel transformation, CCUS is poised to play significant and varied roles. After 2025, CCUS applications are likely to increase in the APS, with CO2 capture increasing to approximately 6 Mt yearly in 2030 and to roughly 190 Mt annually in 2060.

Screenshot 2023 09 12 084959

Eight of the 15 projects will likely begin operating between 2026 and 2035 and help Indonesia reach its pollution reduction goal. Starting in 2026, CCUS is expected to help reduce 2.5 million tons of CO2 annually. With no extra capacity expected from 2031 to 2035, this number is expected to rise gradually to 7,9 million tons per year in 2030 and eventually to 8,6 million tons per year in 2031. According to the International Energy Agency’s projection, the total amount of CO2 stored will likely be 25,5 million tons in 2030 and 68,2 million tons in 2035. According to research carried out in conjunction with the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources, capture and injection capacity will likely increase to 190 million tons by 2060.

Conclusion

Indonesia is the most advanced nation in Southeast Asia in terms of CCUS planning. Ten proposed CCUS projects are in various stages of development. Six of these projects involve CO2 capture at natural gas processing facilities, and the other four involve the production of low-carbon ammonia for fuel purposes, conversion of coal to liquids, pulp and paper production, and refining by 2030, if all plans come to fruition, these projects may be capturing more than 14 Mt CO2 annually. These activities are encouraging, but they have not yet resulted in a final investment decision; supportive policies are needed to encourage investment.

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