Indonesian power company PT Pembangkitan Jawa-Bali (PT PJB), a subsidiary of the state electricity company Perusahaan Listrik Negara (PLN), and Masdar, Abu Dhabi Future Energy Company, signed today a project development agreement (PDA) for the world’s largest floating solar photovoltaic (PV) power plant.
With a capacity of 200 megawatt (MW), the plant will cover an area of 225 hectares atop the Cirata Reservoir in the West Java province of Indonesia. The 6,000-hectare Cirata Reservoir already powers a 1GW hydroelectric power station.
Today’s agreement was signed in Jakarta by Iwan Agung Firstantara, President Director of PLN, and Mohamed Jameel Al Ramahi, Chief Executive Officer of Masdar. Also present at the signing were Arcandra Tahar, Deputy Minister of Indonesia’s Ministry of Energy & Mineral Resources, HE Mohammed Abdullah Al-Ghafli, Ambassador of the UAE to the Republic of Indonesia and representatives from the Indonesian investment agency Badan Koordinasi Penanaman Modal (BKPM).
“PJB is excited and looking forward to working with Masdar,” said Iwan Agung Firstantara, President Director of PT PJB. “We believe this project development agreement is a milestone in the development of other floating PV solar power plants; this 200MW project will be the largest project of its kind in Indonesia and PJB-Masdar will be a pioneer of floating PV technology. Inshallah, developing this project will be a great success and a proud achievement for Indonesia.”
“Today’s signing marks the entry of Masdar into South East Asia and our first project in floating solar power,” said Mohamed Jameel Al Ramahi, Chief Executive Officer of Masdar. “The agreement with PT PJB for the world’s largest floating solar power plant demonstrates Masdar’s ambition as a global renewable energy leader and the strength of our industry partnerships.” One of the advantages of floating solar power in tropical countries like Indonesia is that it enables renewable energy development in forested regions generally unsuitable for conventional solar power. The successful deployment of the Cirata project paves the way for the installation of floating solar power on another 60 reservoirs across Indonesia.
The planned 200MW floating PV project will be mounted on 700,000 floats moored to the bed of the Cirata reservoir and connected by electrical cables to an onshore high-voltage substation. Besides producing clean power, the facility will provide shading against the sun, reducing evaporation from the reservoir and limiting the growth of algae.
Today’s PDA signing follows the agreement of an MoU between PT PJB and Masdar in July this year to collaborate on finding sustainable solutions to Indonesia’s rapidly growing energy demand, with a focus on projects in the Java-Bali and Sumatra regions.
With a population of more than 250 million, Indonesia is the largest country in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). Indonesia has set a renewable energy target of 31% by 2050. According to the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), the country has the potential to produce more than 700 gigawatts (GW) of renewable energy, including 532.6 gigawatts of solar power.
Since 2006, Masdar has invested in renewable energy projects with a combined value of US$8.5 billion; the company’s share of this investment is US$2.7 billion. Masdar commercialises advanced technologies by deploying them at scale. Examples include Hywind Scotland, the world’s first utility-scale offshore wind farm; Gemasolar in Spain, the first solar thermal power plant producing electricity 24 hours a day; and London Array, currently the world’s largest offshore wind farm in operation.
Last year, a Masdar-led consortium was appointed to build the 800MW third phase of the Mohamed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park in Dubai, quoting a record low price for solar power generation. Masdar will be showcasing its global renewable energy project portfolio at Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week, taking place from January 13-20.
Masdar’s presence in Indonesia goes beyond renewable energy project development. Past winners of the Zayed Future Energy Prize, the leading international award recognising innovation and outstanding achievement in sustainability and renewable energy innovation, include Bali-based Kopernick, a winner in the non-profit category in 2016, which aims to reduce poverty in remote communities through renewable energy access. Another prize recipient is Green School Bali, winner of the 2017 Global High Schools (Asia) award.