Online, 5 October 2022
ASEAN Centre for Energy (ACE) and China Renewable Energy Engineering Institute (CREEI) co-organised Day 2 of the series “ASEAN-China Capacity Building on Solar PV+ Utilisation,” supported by the ASEAN-China Cooperation Fund (ACCF). The three-day series is part of the activities under the project “Utilisation of Solar PV to Support the Green Economic Recovery in ASEAN Post COVID-19,” aiming to promote green recovery and sustainable energy transition in ASEAN through penetrating solar PV implementation in different industries.
Under the theme “Solar PV+ in Agriculture, Fishery, and Animal Husbandry”, the 2nd day of the capacity building continued to develop talents in the solar industry by creating constructive dialogues between experts on PV+, industry leaders, and government officials from ASEAN and China. The event is also in accordance with the Programme Area 5: Renewable Energy under the ASEAN Plan of Action for Energy Cooperation (APAEC) Phase II: 2021-2025.
Day 2 of the series is the continuation of Day 1 on “Solar PV+ Potential as Green Recovery Strategy,” successfully held on 31 August 2022. The event was conducted on Zoom Webinar and broadcasted on ACE’s official YouTube channel.
As the name suggests, the main topic of discussion for the second day of the capacity-building event surrounded Solar PV+ in Agriculture, Fishery, and Animal Husbandry. The first session is about Solar PV+ in Agriculture, which is moderated by Mr. Praptono Adi Sulistomo, Policy Analyst/Coordinator of Renewable Energy Investment and Cooperation at the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources of Indonesia.
The first session began with a presentation by Ms. Shana Fatina, Director of Komodo Water. She shared her company’s success in offering an integrated water management solution for a community located in several areas in Nusa Tenggara Timur, Indonesia. Her company, Komodo Water, offered a community-scale solar desalination plant in the coastal area. According to the data provided in the presentation, Komodo Water’s solution can produce affordable drinking water of up to 5000 litres/day and is 100% operated by the local community.
Mr. Gan Peng, Business Head of the Southeastern Asia Division, Chint New Energy Development Co., Ltd., presented the project of Agriculture + Photovoltaics that is implemented on CHINT’s Agrivoltaics Project. He conveyed a 200 MW power plant located in a 1,050 acres area in Jiangshan, Zhejiang Province, China. Mr. Gan Peng displayed studies showing that implementing Solar PV co-shared with crop plantation can increase crop productivity by 60%. Furthermore, nearly 1000 farmers of the rural community nearby profited up to USD738,000 in total from the labour payment by the project. Agrivoltaics development in China, according to Mr. Gan Peng, is enormous given that there is 5.2 million sq. km of arable land available.
Mr. Praptono Adi Sulistomo, as the moderator, opened the first-panel session by asking all the panelists about the policy improvement needed for ASEAN Member States (AMS) to increase the implementation of Solar PV+. Mr. Arkorn Soikaew, a Scientist at the Department of Alternative Energy Development and Efficiency (DEDE) of Thailand, joined the panel session and gave his thoughts on the question. He shared that Thailand has been using Solar PV+ in agriculture for quite some time but only on a small scale. He proposed that government, especially in Thailand, should cater to groups of farmers with different approaches, such as giving free Solar PV and supporting the installation for low-income farmers. While for big corporation farming and new-generation farmers, the government should encourage more pilot plants of smart farming using Solar PV+. Mr. Gan Peng also weighed in and spoke based on his experience. China gives incentives and makes land classification management.
On the business model needed for Solar PV+ uptake in these sectors, Mr. Gan Peng added that from the beginning of the project, meticulous and careful simulation of the plant’s growth in designing the Solar PV electricity generation. Furthermore, in addressing the challenges to developing renewable energy projects in rural communities, Ms. Shana Fatina emphasised three main solutions: (1) to integrate the technology into the issues being faced by that community, (2) to overcome the language barrier that hinders socialisation until the installation process, and (3) to finance the projects appropriately.
Following the first panel discussion, the second session with the topic “Solar PV+ in Fishery and Husbandry” was moderated by Ms. Monika Merdekawati, Research Analyst from ACE. The Director of Asia of Ocean Sun Pte, Ltd., Mr. Are Gløersen, began the session by introducing floating PV (FPV) projects from Ocean Sun Floating Solar. He stated that Ocean Sun’s FPV system offers the lowest cost today, less than 0.30-0.35 $/Wp. Ocean Sun has a demo plant installed at Singapore’s Jurong Island.
The second session continued with Mr. Hu Gaofeng, Director of International Business Department, SPIC Huanghe Hydropower Development Co. Ltd. Mr. Hu Gaofeng presented the application and case study of Solar PV+ in the husbandry sector in China. One notable application for PV+ in the fishery is the first FPV in Anhui Province, China. It reduces the evaporation of water for crop irrigation and direct sunlight, thus resulting in good water quality. In the animal husbandry sector, there is a PV+ implementation located in Yunnan which increases residents’ income when breeding chickens, ducks, and sheep.
Mr. Aris Sudarto, Policy Analyst/Sub coordinator of Renewable Energy Engineering at the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources Indonesia joined the second-panel discussion. His thoughts on implementing Solar PV+ for fisheries and animal husbandry in Indonesia was that the government of Indonesia aims to stimulate local economies by implementing renewable energy like PV+. The government implemented rooftop PV for cold storage in islands and an ice-making station powered by solar PV in collaboration with GIZ (Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit) GmbH.
As part of the government of Thailand’s circular economy initiative, farmers have been aware of cutting their production costs and being more efficient by implementing PV+ like Solar PV on their buildings, according to Mr. Arkorn. Moreover, he added that some of the 500,000 freshwater farms and 43,000 marine aquaculture farms had installed Solar PV for their lighting. Ms. Monika Merdekawati, as the moderator, noted a significant difference in the driving force for the industry to adopt Solar PV+ in Thailand and Indonesia. In Thailand, they are motivated to cut electricity consumption, while in Indonesia the case is more into providing access itself to electricity.
On the issue of technicality and knowledge transfer for the local community, Mr. Are Gløersen as the technology provider needs a local EPC (Engineering, Procurement, and Commissioning) partner to provide logistics and installation of their platforms, while O&M can be handled by the local people. Mr. Hu Gaofeng added that on this issue, we must focus on the power production efficiency that is in parallel with the fishery or animal husbandry production.
The event concluded with panelists and moderator agreeing that AMS has enormous potential for Solar PV+ in fisheries and animal husbandry. To make this a reality, governments as the main stakeholder should establish supporting policies and regulations that would incentivise the implementation of Solar PV+ for Agriculture, Fisheries, and Animal Husbandry, as well as provide affordable financing schemes that could prove vital to many projects. In addition, there should be more effort in socialising these innovative technologies to the local communities where they will be implemented because they are the primary beneficiaries of this development.
The next workshop from the ASEAN-China Capacity Building on Solar PV+ Utilisation series will be held on 6 October 2022, with the topic “Solar PV+ Building and Ecological Management”.
The recording of this event can be accessed on our YouTube channel here.
The material of this event can be accessed here.
(JJAP / MM)