Jakarta, June 23, 2020-Today, Trend Asia together with Walhi Jakarta and Pena Masyarakat launched a report entitled “Dust Poison in Jawara Village” which contained a risk analysis of the Java 9 & 10 power plant development project in Cilegon, Banten. This report also exposes how the new commitment of the party supporting South Korean President Moon Jae In to reduce emissions and the rate of global warming through the “Green New Deal” is irrelevant because it still supports dirty investment policies abroad.

In a few days, KEPCO, one of the funding agencies of the South Korean electricity company, will hold a meeting to decide the continuation of the Java 9 and 10 project funding. Previously, the project business feasibility study found that the project was not a profitable investment.

“KEPCO sought board approval for the Java 9 and 10 power plant projects even though Korea Development Institute (KDI) has repeatedly warned that this project has negative profitability in the pre-feasibility study. If KEPCO insists on pursuing this project, it will result in significant losses, not only to KEPCO but also its partners in Indonesia and financial investors from the project,” said Sejong Youn, Director of the Overseas Coal Program Solutions for Our Climate.

At present, we all know that PLN continues to suffer financial losses and still depend on government subsidies. In a depressed condition like now, it would be wiser for PLN to introspect so that its finances are healthier.

“What will happen if PLN is locked in with the obligation to meet the payment of basic load capacity from the IPP without having the required request, while PLN cannot raise tariffs? What will happen if the government can no longer support PLN’s cash flow needs, given that our fiscal deficit has widened more than doubled from previous years?” said Elrika Hamdi, Energy Analyst of the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (IEEFA).

Aside from being unhealthy in business, this project certainly adds to the vulnerability of people living in the shadow of the issue of industrial waste and the Covid-19 pandemic. Air pollution generated by the power plant funnel has a wide impact on the citizens of Banten, even in Jakarta. The presence of this project will certainly squeeze the living space of the community and reduce the resilience of residents in facing situations like this.

Tubagus Soleh Ahmadi, Walhi Jakarta’s Executive Director emphasized that currently, the power plant which has been established in Banten has shown various impacts on the environment and affects the source of human life.

“Adding a coal power plant is the same as aggravating the environment. This choice also overrides the public’s insistence that the country should immediately move to clean renewable energy, through a just transition. Furthermore, it means that funding a power plant project is tantamount to “sponsoring” environmental destruction,” Bagus said.

The purpose of the construction of the Java 9 & 10 power plant is questionable. This project is obviously not strategic, because the availability of electricity in Java is already oversupplied.

“At present, Java 9 & 10 power plant is a mega-investment project that is neither strategic nor relevant. This project will bring enormous environmental, economic, and public health impacts in the future. The most profitable step right now is to immediately review and take the final decision to cancel,” concluded Andri Prasetiyo, Researcher and Campaigner for Trend Asia.

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Photos and videos are available at the following links:

https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1j5T__40w- 2ZH9sBfyKtQyZU6EmylIkXX?usp=sharing

The press conference’s recording can be seen here: