President of Indonesia Inaugurates Southeast Asia’s Largest Floating Solar Plant

Abu Dhabi Future Energy Company PJSC – Masdar, the UAE’s clean energy leader, and Indonesia’s state-owned utility company, PLN have inaugurated the 145 megawatt, Cirata floating solar plant in Indonesia, the largest in the Southeast Asia region.  
President of Indonesia Inaugurates Southeast Asia’s Largest Floating Solar Plant
Courtesy of Masdar

The inauguration was held in the presence of: Joko Widodo, President of the Republic of Indonesia; Arifin Tasrif, Indonesia’s Minister of Energy and Mineral Resources; Dr. Thani Al Zeyoudi, UAE Minister of State for Foreign Trade; Erick Thohir, Indonesia’s Minister of State Owned Enterprises; Mohamed Jameel Al Ramahi Chief Executive Officer of Masdar, and Darmawan Prasodjo, Chief Executive Officer of PLN Group.

Cirata is Masdar’s first floating PV project and its first renewable energy project in the Southeast Asian market. Built on a 250-hectare plot of the Cirata Reservoir, in the West Java province, it will power 50,000 homes and offset 214,000 tons of carbon dioxide emissions.

Masdar and PLN NP recently signed an MOU to develop Phase II of Cirata with up to 500MW additional capacity, following a regulatory development from the Ministry of Public Works and Housing in Indonesia that that has increased the portion of water that can be covered, for renewable energy uses, to a maximum of 20 percent.

Dr. Sultan Al Jaber, said, “The inauguration of this floating solar PV plant at Cirata is a testament to Masdar’s pioneering ethos, our innovative spirit and power of partnership.With just a few days to go before COP28 in the UAE, it is exciting to see tangible progress being made on further ramping up of renewables capacity as we collectively seek to deliver unified action on climate change that will work for all parts of the world.”

Mohamed Jameel Al Ramahi, added, “The inauguration of Cirata demonstrates Masdar’s commitment to developing cutting-edge technologies to provide world-class solutions. We are delighted that the development of our first floating solar plant with PLN Group is fully operational and supporting Indonesia’s renewable energy objectives. In October 2023, Masdar and PLN Group agreed to triple the existing capacity of this already record-breaking project, supporting Indonesia’s decarbonization and net-zero ambitions."

Indonesia is a key strategic market in Southeast Asia for Masdar where the UAE’s clean energy powerhouse has an expanding portfolio of interests. In addition to Cirata, Masdar entered the geothermal energy sector through a strategic investment in Pertamina Geothermal Energy (PGE) in February 2023. Masdar also opened an office in Jakarta in 2021 to further strengthen links with key players within the region.

Indonesia has plans to increase its renewable energy mix and pledged to reach net-zero emissions by 2060 or sooner. The Southeast Asian nation has committed to a 29% reduction in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 2030. Ahead of COP28, to be hosted in the UAE later this year, the expansion agreement demonstrates the UAE’s commitment to supporting countries around the world with their decarbonization plans for a cleaner, greener future.

Scaling up renewables could save Indonesia, the largest energy user in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations region, as much as $51.7 billion per year when the impacts on air pollution and climate change are included, according to the International Renewable Energy Agency. 

Floating solar plants are attractive to countries like Indonesia with expanding populations and scarce land resources. They provide higher solar panel efficiency and productivity due to the close proximity of the panels to the water surface that helps cool them. Floating panels also reduce evaporation, saving fresh water for drinking and irrigation purposes. 

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