Thu, 05 Jun 2008
Jakarta (ANTARA News) - The government is drawing up a program to build a second series of power plants with a combined capacity of 10,000 MW across the country to keep up with the mounting public need for electricity, a minister said.

Some aspects of the program were disclosed by Energy and Mineral Resources Minister Purnomo Yusgiantoro to reporters following a meeting on acceleration of the first 10,000-MW power plants project at the vice presidential office here Wednesday.

The government had decided to set up another series of power plants with a total capacity of 10,000 MW because domestic demand for electricity was growing fast."In a number of regions outside Java, the need for electricity is now even growing at almost 10 percent per year," he said.

While the first series of power plants were all coal-fired, the second series would for only 30 percent consist of coal-fired plants. The remainder would be made up of geothermal, hydropower and other types of power generating facilities, he said.

The geothermal power plants would have a total potential of 27,000 MW and the hydropower facilities 60,000 MW with the rest to be provided by plants running on new and renewable energy sources.

As pollution by the operation of coal-fired power plants in Java had already reached a fairly high level, the coal-fired plants in the second program would only be built outside Java, the minister said.

Asked whether the new and renewable energy sources he had mentioned would include nuclear energy, Yusgiantoro did not give a clear reply. "The emphasis will be on geothermal and hydropwer. We still have to conduct studies on the use of other energy sources such as wind, solar and other energy sources. We have been given a month to make these studies," he said.

About the time it would take to build the additional power plants, the minister said it would be a "multi-year project" that would transcend the five-year term of any single administration.

The project was estimated to require a total investment of between 8 billion and 9 billion US dollars, he added.

Present at the meeting led by Vice President Jusuf Kalla on Wednesday were also Industry Minister Fahmi Idris, National Development Planning Minister Paskah Suzeta, Finance Minister Sri Mulyani, State Enterprises Minister Sofyan Djalil, PT PLN (State Electricty Company) Fahmi Mochtar.(*)



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