Biogas technology was introduced to Indonesia in the 1970s when the cost of constructing a biogas system was significantly higher than it is today. Other major barriers to development included the heavy subsidies which fossil fuels received from the Government and the relatively cheap and available wood-based fuels.
Over the last decade, with growing interest in renewable energy, biogas technology has again started to receive attention in Indonesia. In 2008, the Indonesian government proposed a study to determine the potential demand for biogas of one million small domestic biogas plants. The study, funded by the Dutch government, indicated that farmers on Java island were a suitable target to kickstart the programme since most stabled their cattle, making the collection of animal waste for use as inputs relatively easy.
In May 2009, the BIogas RUmah, or ‘household biogas’ (BIRU) programme, started. The Humanist Institute for Development Cooperation (HIVOS) was appointed by the Dutch government as programme manager, with technical assistance from the Netherlands Development Organization (SNV). EUR6 million was allocated to implement the programme, with the target of installing 10,000 bio-digesters by the end of 2013. HIVOS’s latest data (mid-2013) shows that approximately 11,000 bio-digesters have been installed with further expansion of the number of participating households anticipated.
Relationship to CSA
The utilization of animal wastes for bioenergy lessens the dependence on fossil fuels, which can help mitigate climate change. In addition, the by-products of household biogas act as organic fertilizers, benefiting agricultural production. It also helps rural communities improve their access to energy for cooking and electricity, reduces negative health impacts, and enhances livelihoods at the same time.
Impacts and lessons learned
By 2013, the programme had already exceeded its initial target of installing 10,000 bio-digesters. However, getting farmers involved was not easy, due to their negative experience with the previous government biogas programme. Extensive and intensive community coaching was part of the programme and was necessary to break down barriers and retrieve farmers’ trust. The BIRU programme was therefore designed not only to enhance demand and supply, but also to create a complete supporting system. The use of biogas for cooking and of bio-slurry as fertilizer were also important benefits.
FAO. 2014a. Indonesia (Case 2): BIRU biogas programme. In: Small-Scale Bioenergy Initiatives in ASEAN +3. Bangkok: Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific. pp. 66-81.http://www.fao.org/fileadmin/templates/rap/files/meetings/2015/141218_Final_report.pdf
In May 2009, the BIogas RUmah or ‘household biogas’ (BIRU) programme officially started. The Humanist Institute for Development Cooperation (HIVOS) was appointed by the Dutch government as programme manager, with technical assistance from SNV (the Netherlands Development Organisation). EUR6 million was allocated to implement the programme, with the target of installing 10 000 biodigesters by the end of 2013; HIVOS’s latest data (mid-2013) shows however that approximately 11 000 biodigesters have been installed. HIVOS is continuously seeking further expansion of the number of households participating in the initiative. This initiative was intended to create a sustainable domestic biogas market in Indonesia. However, despite its success, financial support is still needed to further develop and maintain programme 67 activities, and HIVOS continues to seek additional funding to extent and expand the initiative. HIVOS data shows that the cost of building a biodigester is US$720. As part of the initiative, farmers receive a partial subsidy (US$220, approximately 30 percent of the total cost) to construct the biodigesters; they pay for the rest by through a credit mechanism. The subsidy is not paid directly to the farmers but to the construction partners who build the biogas system. HIVOS has approached several financial institutions (including local banks) to set up a microcredit mechanism enabling farmers to pay back the biodigester costs in installments over a payback period set to 3.5 years with monthly instalments of IDR144 0004 . In East Java province, where farmers sell their dairy products to cooperatives, each installment is deducted from the monthly payment of the dairy products sold by the farmers. This scheme has been proven to be very successful and East Java is currently one of provinces where the largest number of biodigesters have been installed.
World Bank. 2013. Indonesia: Toward Universal Access to Clean Cooking. Washington, DC: World Bank.https://openknowledge.worldbank.org/bitstream/handle/10986/16068/792790ESW0P1290ox0377371B00PUBLIC00.pdf?sequence=1&isAllowed=y Indonesia's household cooking fuels have undergone a dramatic shift in recent years, owing primarily to the government's highly successful Kerosene-to- Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) Conversion Program; yet the impact in poorer rural areas has been limited. Switching to LPG, electricity, and other modern fuels would be the most effective way to achieve clean cooking solutions, but these fuels are expensive, requiring costly stoves and delivery infrastructure that are beyond reach for most rural households. By contrast, many types of biomass can be freely collected from the local environment or purchased for significantly less than other fuels. Thus, large-scale fuel switching in rural areas is unlikely to occur until rural economies become substantially more developed. This means that an estimated 40 percent of households will continue to rely on traditional biomass energy, especially fuel wood, to meet their daily cooking needs for years to come. This report is structured according to the directional organization of the study. Chapter two presents an overview of household cooking fuels in Indonesia, including policy changes and other factors that influence fuel choices. Chapter three examines an array of stove supply side issues, including market and production capacity, popular stove models, limitations of business models, key features of the supply chain, and attitudes toward new stoves. Chapter four identifies gaps in policies and institutional strengthening that future intervention programs will need to fill and reviews lessons from successful programs promoting clean cooking solutions that can be applied to those focused on clean biomass cooking. Finally, chapter five presents the recommended implementation strategy, including an innovative financing approach, and the next steps in helping Indonesia move toward universal access to clean cooking solutions by 2030.