This file photo from 2016 shows a man inspects solar panels installed at the roof of the Ministry of Energy and Mineral resources in Jakarta. (Antara Photo/Muhammad Adimaja)

SUN Energy Targets 2 GWp Portfolio in Southeast Asia by 2025


JULY 28, 2021

[Updated at 12:20 on Wednesday, July 28, 2021, for a correction in the 3rd paragraph]

Jakarta. Surya Utama Nuansa, one of Indonesia’s largest solar power developers, aims to increase its Southeast Asian portfolio by eleven-fold to a total capacity of 2 gigawatt peak, as more customers would soon realize the cost for transitioning to solar power has become more competitive compared to fossil fuel energy. 

The company, also known by its trade name SUN Energy, now works and operates on projects in Indonesia, Taiwan, Vietnam, and Thailand with a total capacity of 180 megawatts peak (MWp). Solar power plants use MWp to describe their capacity under ideal conditions.

With the global trend to shift to renewable energy, SUN Energy COO Philip Lee said he is optimistic they can increase their Southeast Asian portfolio to 2 GWp by 2025, equivalent to 2.000 hectares of land used for solar panels. 

“The wave of renewable energy is here to stay.  People are expecting [the wave] because it has happened in the US, Myanmar, Singapore, even Cambodia,” Lee said during a media visit to BeritaSatu Media Holdings on Tuesday. 

The urgency to switch to renewable energy has increased globally in the last few years following the Paris Agreement, which Indonesia signed in 2016. Last year, the government set to have 23 percent energy coming from renewable sources by 2025.

Though Indonesia has made significant progress in switching to clean and renewable energy — with 11.5 percent of energy now coming from renewable sources — it is still halfway from its 2025 target.

Dion Jefferson, SUN Energy's CCO, said that the company is responding to public hesitancy towards switching solar energy through providing education in the form of webinars, interviews, and campaigns. 

“There is a public perception that using solar energy is expensive when it’s not anymore,” he said. 

In fact, SUN Energy boasts a zero investment financing scheme where clients can either purchase, rent or lease the solar panels, as demonstrated in three different financial models. This scheme includes zero upfront costs following the panel’s installation, or a “Solar Journey with 0% Investment,” as noted on their website. 

By providing education about the affordability and ease of switching to solar energy, the solar developer increased project demand four times this year compared to last year.

Currently, the company has installed and contracted 80MWp of solar projects in Indonesia and has secured over 100 MWp of project capacity throughout Southeast Asia. According to the Statista Research Department, Indonesia’s solar energy capacity was approximately 172 MWp in 2020.

Correction: A previous version of this article stated SUN Energy would increase its land use for solar panels to 1.000 hectares by 2025. It should be 2.000 hectares. The Globe regrets the error.