NGOs urge government to change energy policy

Environmentalists from a number of non governmental organizations (NGOs) have been united to urge President Joko widodo (Jokowi) to change the government energy policy to reduce dependence more on coal.

The administration of Jokowi should lead energy revolution in Indonesia by replacing coal with clean and sustainable sources of energy, Arif Fiyanto, a leader of Greenpeace Indonesia said.

“The revolution has to be preceded by change in the paradigm of the national energy policy,” Arif said in a statement here on Wednesday.

He said the vision of the government of President Jokowi to achieve sovereignty in energy could not be a reality if the country still relies on coal as the national sources energy.

Relying on coal as a source of energy could lead to massive destruction of the environment as a result of massive exploitation of coal reserves, he said.

Coordinator of Mining Advocacy Network Hendrik Siregar said coal is the most pollutive fossil fuel in the world accounting for more than half of the greenhouse gas emission that causes global climate change.

Hendrik said coal causes damage to the environment from the process of mining , transport, to burning to generate electricity.

The benefit is not comparable to the devastation caused by coal, he added.

Chairman of the Study Unit of the Indonesian Environmental Forum (WAlhi) Pius Ginting called on the government to take advantage of the coal price fall to cut production of the commodity.

Production could be reduced by regulating tighter quota system based on the social and environmental condition rather than on market condition, Pius said.

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