Surkarta (PKPTKI LPPM UNS) – The Indonesian government continues to promote induction stoves to be able to reduce imports of Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) through an induction stove conversion program. The program was inititiated by the President of the Republic of Indonesia, Mr. Joko Widodo, at Istana Bogor on November 16th 2021.
To accelerate this program, the Indonesian government instructed PT PLN, and the program was carried out for the first phase in two cities, Surakarta, Central Java and Denpasar, Bali. In Surakarta, pilot project of the program was implemented by Research Center for Techonology Development and Industrial Collaboration (PKPTKI), Institure for Research and Community Services (LPPM), Universitas Sebelas Maret (UNS), under the collaboration with PT PLN, in 2022.
The first phase of program is not really attractive to the households’ characteristics in Surakarta, both poor or wealthier households as energy transition. In this initiaing phase, local people gave a positive response (66%) in receiving an induction stove, however the induction stove program has not give a big impact on improving welfare for local community. Until November 2022, the households which have switched to induction stoves has reached 15%, and more than 80% household still use the induction stove and gas stove alternately. Meanwhile, Yumi Anggraini and Nanda Kumar Janardhanan, Ph.D – the researcher from Institute for Global Environmental Strategies (IGES) Japan, when discussing related evaluation of induction stove conversion program in Surakarta, with PKPTKI LPPM UNS on December 14th 2022, stated that “the substitution must be paired with effective targeting regulatory instruments, financial support, and the necessary infrastructure to support the change and long-term usage”. The program is also must be done with a careful bottom-up approach.
In the observation, PKP-TKI LPPM UNS suggested to the Indonesian government to have e a plan and preparation of the program more measurable and structured. These strategies operated with the policy formulation, regulation and standard operating procedure; well-program management, well-socialization, education and assistance; risk mitigation, supporting data information center and well-framework shifting mechanism.
Also, PKP-TKI LPPM UNS considered about synergy of cooperation (task and responsibility, coordination and communication)with all stakeholders (from high level-government to low level-operational) to this program.
The conversion program is always challenging for the Indonesian government. It’s not an easy thing to convert energy to Indonesian people with different characteristics. In fact, the energy conversion, from fuel oil (BBM) to LPG 3kg in 2007 until today, are still not been on target (https://www.esdm.go.id/id/berita-unit/direktorat-jenderal-minyak-dan-gas-bumi/agar-tepat-sasaran-subsidi-lpg-3-kg-diberikan-non-tunai-mulai-tahun-202).
In promoting induction stoves, PKPTKI LPPM UNS faced many challenges in the first phase of the induction stoves conversion program in Surakarta, During the interview, Yumi asked, “What are the barriers, and how have they been overcome?”
The observation found some cases that have unstable power of their electricity. Some people who receive induction stoves experienced in drop electricity at their home. So, in this program, we did socialization to increase the power for free by PLN. However, as you know, currently electricity subsidy scheme is based on household connection capacity. Only households with 450 VA and 900 Va are eligible for the subsidy. In our observation, mostly they got power supply up to 1300 VA and the local people actually worried to lose their subsidy. So, many households are also reluctant to take risks of the program eventhough PT PLN assured that the fee of electricty would not be change.
Dr. Retno Wulan Damayanti, as a chief of the pilot project of this program, also stated that “the program need to be evaluated, especially in supporting infrastructure such as power supply, safe and well installation, information center of induction stoves since many people have no knowledge to use inductrion stove, and create the industrial ecosystem for supporting their lifestyle especially on cooking utensils”.
On the other hand, Yumi question whether the energy transition will be better for the environment, according the amount of GHG emissions related to electricity depends on the nation’s electricity generation mix and with Indonesia’s current outlook, converson from LPG to induction stoves may lead to more carbon emissions. In the future, when the Indonesian government continues to promote this program, socio-technology, economic, cultural, industrial and environmental aspects need to be reviewed. So that the program can be accelerated with great care and right on target.