Indonesia Calculator 2050 a Tool to Create a Better World

13, Aug 2015 | Author: Embassy of Indonesia

Source: The Jakarta Post

Should we switch to LED bulbs? Do we really need more oil palm plantations? Is a nuclear plant necessary or not?

Those are the current hot issues without definitive solutions on the horizon except for open-ended answers.

The newly released web-based computer program Indonesia Calculator 2050, an adaptation of the UK’s Calculator 2050, might have presented a more satisfying answer than the vague “that depends”.

The Indonesia 2050 Pathways Calculator (I2050PC), its official name, was launched in April as a tool to help the development of energy policy in order to reduce gas emissions.

“The tool can support public debate on energy policy planning and analysis,” said Bobby AT Wattimena, energy researcher from Yayasan Pelangi Indonesia — an NGO focusing its efforts on the environment.

In a one-day workshop held last week, the modeler’s team from the Energy and Mineral Resources Ministry, the Indonesian Institute for Energy Economics (IIEE) and Yayasan Pelangi trained the media, relevant NGOs and cross-ministerial working groups on how to utilize the program.

Anyone with an Internet connection can access to communicate their ideas on the future energy policies.

The simulator shows Indonesia’s energy demand and supply together with land use scenarios and how they interact to determine the country’s future energy security, emissions and land utilization projected to the year 2050.

It is an interactive user-friendly tool that is based on an energy-balancing model which uses a number of sectoral trajectories to calculate possible development pathways.

The sectors included in the calculation are energy security; electricity; energy flows; land use and emissions from households, commerce, industry, transportation; and plantations, mining and construction; as well as conventional and renewable energy resources.

Users can explore all levels of pathway options and further investigate the impacts of the options on other sectors as shown in the related graphics (see pictures).

For example, users can slow down the import of crude oil by optimizing the use of renewable energy resources, or they can reduce energy demand by changing people’s behavior and implementing regulations on the standard use of energy.

The government has set a target of 23 percent renewable energy use in 2025 which is expected to rise to 31 percent by 2050.

The tool is equipped with comprehensive, detailed information to help non-experts to create their own pathways.

However, the current version is not final because it has yet to include costs in the calculation while the team is also fixing some minor editorial glitches, according to Yayasan Pelangi national program coordinator Mahawira Singh Dillon.

“We need feedback from the public, including on the methodology we use for the tool,” he said.

There is a direct link onscreen for users who wish to share their pathways on Facebook or to submit them as a proposal to the ministry and get the chance to win in an ongoing competition.

“In the UK, there have been several scenarios [to reduce emissions] named after important persons who submitted their pathways. You might have your energy and emissions choices being adopted in the government’s policy,” added Rizka Sari, energy adviser for the UK Climate Change Unit who also presented the tutorial.

Currently there are more than 12 countries — and more in the pipeline — which have developed the tool that helped the UK to develop national plans to reduce emissions by 80 percent by 2050.

Other than Indonesia and the UK, countries that already have their own calculators are Australia, Belgium, Bangladesh, China, Colombia, India, Japan, Mauritius, Portugal, South Africa, South Korea, Switzerland, Thailand and Vietnam.

While the web tool is a version fit for stakeholders such as universities, local administrations and NGOs, the My2050 simulation can be used to educate children.

The spreadsheet version is the actual modeling that contains all the assumptions and all the formulae used in the other two versions.

“The web tool, however, is the perfect one to engage the public that we can use during the road show,” said Rizka.

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