Indonesian oil and gas firm plans 55MW geothermal plant in Sumatra

Conceptual Graphic Image of Geothermal Power Plant. Credit: Mitsubishi Heavy Industries

PT Pertamina Geothermal Energy (PGE) has placed an order with Mitsubishi Power for a 55MW geothermal power plant to be built in the Indonesian province of South Sumatra.

The Lumut Balai Unit 2 geothermal power plant is owned by Indonesia’s state-owned oil and natural gas corporation PT Pertamina (Persero) and is scheduled to begin commercial operations in 2024.

The power plant will be located about 290km southwest of the city of Palembang at an elevation of approximately 1,000 meters.

Mitsubishi Power will be in charge of the basic design, installation and trial operation of the generation facilities, and will supply PGE with the steam turbine, generator, and other main accessory equipment.

Kazuki Ishikura, president director of MHI Group local subsidiary PT. Mitsubishi Power Indonesia, said in a statement: “Indonesia has the world’s second-largest geothermal potential, and we are honoured to have a hand in supporting power plants across Indonesia that leverage this massive potential…”

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The contract will be delivered together with Mitsubishi Corporation, Chinese construction company SEPCO III Electric Power Construction Co. and local major civil engineering and construction firm PT Wijaya Karya.

PGE is currently focusing its efforts on building new geothermal power plants and increasing output. The aim of these projects, according to the energy company, is to contribute to reaching the government’s target of 23% renewable energy in the mix by 2025. Also, it will help meet the country’s increasing demand arising from the pandemic recovery.

According to the International Renewable Energy Agency’s (IRENA) Indonesia Energy Transition Outlook report, Indonesia’s population is projected to reach 335 million people over the coming three decades, resulting in electricity demand growing at least fivefold to over 1,700 terawatt hours (TWh) from the present levels by mid-century.

“Indonesia’s rising energy demand gives the country the opportunity to untap its huge renewables potential and advance in its pursuit of a just, sustainable, low-carbon economic growth”, said IRENA’s director-general, Francesco La Camera.

“Endowed with an abundance of renewable energy resources Indonesia is uniquely positioned to develop a sustainable energy system based on renewable energy that can support its socio-economic development, address climate change, and achieve energy security and resilience.”

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