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Roadmap to Achieving Indonesia’s Targets

In the dizzying aftermath of the 17th Annual Conference of the Parties (COP-17) in Durban, South Africa, as climate policy analysts scramble to interpret the implications of the “Durban Platform,” it is worth stepping back a moment to look at a piece of legislation that was passed by Presidential Regulation in the archipelagic country of Indonesia just two months prior.  The Government of Indonesia’s National Action Plan for Reducing Greenhouse Gas emissions (“RAN-GRK”) is symbolic for several reasons. It demonstrates a country’s ability to follow through on a pledge made during an international negotiation; Indonesia was the first developing country to announce domestic emissions targets two years ago at the G-20 summit in Pittsburg. It is an example of how ambitious action in regards to climate change is compatible with development. And it showcases a developing country leading the way in announcing domestic emissions targets and the potential for international support to make a serious contribution. (GHG reductions of 26% below BAU by 2020 with unilateral support and 41% with proper international support.) For these reasons, we should look at this policy as a positive step forward for action on climate change and hopefully a model for others to follow.

CCAP recently launched its Indonesia profile that includes 4 reports on Indonesia’s Electricity sector: Clean Coal Analysis, Energy Efficiency Potential Analysis, International Policy Linkages, and Indonesia’s Electricity Sector.  These reports offer clear insight into the state of the country’s electricity sector and present bold solutions to stem soaring CO2 emissions. They also contribute to Indonesia’s national efforts by addressing one of the biggest sectors identified in the National Action Plan: Energy and Transportation.

The situation in Indonesia is all too recognizable. Historically, Indonesian economic and development policy has been focused on assuring economic growth and stability of power supplies. This stems in part from the country’s pace of development and the fate of its economy depends on the rapid growth of the power sector. But as Indonesia brings huge amounts of new capacity online to fuel its development, emissions will continue to soar.  The policies pursued by the Indonesian government and the support the international community provides will dramatically alter the trajectory of its emissions.

Among other things, CCAP’s reports analyze the energy demand reduction potential in the Residential and Commercial sectors, explore the possibilities of developing and applying a sectoral approach for GHG mitigation in the electricity sector, and emphasize the need for Indonesia to address the emissions profile of coal-based power. By utilizing existing and future international institutions and climate finance mechanisms to secure funding and technology, significant emissions reductions efforts are possible in the power sector.

Despite the challenges of getting international consensus on climate change, Indonesia’s National Action Plan demonstrates that developing countries can be ambitious in climate change action and harness the resources of the international community. Indeed, these actions are demonstrating the growing influence of developing countries on climate change mitigation.   As the world works towards reaching a successful global agreement by 2015 as envisioned under the Durban Platform, CCAP will continue to support such efforts.

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