Greenpeace last night lit up the ancient temple of Borobudur on the outskirts of Yogyakarta--a UNESCO World Heritage site--using only renewable energy.
Greenpeace sees the “Solarizing Borobodur” event as a ‘moment of enlightenment,’ which symbolizes that Indonesia can achieve a cleaner and safer energy future.
Sri Puryono, Central Java Governor Assistant on behalf of Bibit Waluyo, Central Java Governor, and Dawn Gosling of Greenpeace Southeast Asia, did the honours at the closing ceremony, pushing the ‘Energy Revolution’ button that lit up solar panels installed around Borobudur temple and the Climate Rescue Station.
“This is how the NGO and civil society should work: real action. We really appreciate what Greenpeace is doing, because we share the same goal and vision, that renewable energy usage is really important. The government is planning to maximize renewable energy use in Central Java,” said Bibit Waluyo.
“When we look back in years to come we will remember that it was this symbolic action that inspired Indonesia to reduce its dependence on coal and other dangerous fossil fuels and embrace an energy revolution, giving people across the country access to clean, safe energy,” said Dawn Gosling, Greenpeace Southeast Asia Chief Operating Officer.
“We take this project as our inspiration to work towards a cleaner, greener and safer future powered by renewable energy which comes from nature such as the wind, the sun and geothermal energy which meet environmental sustainability standards. May today be the enlightenment of Indonesia’s renewable energy future to end the age or era of coal. We must move forward to the Energy [R]evolution now,” she added.
Indonesia is one of Southeast Asia's fastest growing economies and will need massive power generation in the future to meet the increasing energy demands of its population and industry. Unfortunately, Indonesia is still heavily dependent on fossil fuels, particularly coal. Coal- fired power plants are the biggest source of man-made carbon emissions, and the single biggest cause of climate change. Coal also causes irreparable damage to the environment, livelihoods and health of the Indonesian people.
Due to Indonesia’s geography, the national electricity grid is quite fragmented, leaving one-third of its population without electricity. Currently, diesel generators--which are expensive and dependent on continuous fuel supply--are the only source of power for communities in remote areas.
“Decentralized, off-grid, small-scale RE plants would allow local people to gain access to clean electricity and help them move away from expensive diesel or gas,” Hindun Mulaika, Greenpeace Climate and Renewable Energy campaigner added.
Notes to editors:
The Climate Rescue Station is a four-storey tall spherical structure used as a mobile museum to generate awareness about renewable energy solutions to combat climate change. It has been used around the world as a platform to tell the world that ordinary people can do something to stop climate change--but only if governments opt for a massive uptake of renewable energy (RE).
It was first launched in Poland in 2008, on the edge of one of the biggest open cast mines in Europe to expose how coal destroys community health and livelihoods. The structure has travelled the world to draw public attention to urgent issues around climate change and solutions. The structure’s electrical systems are powered by wind and solar energy. It is in Indonesia to demonstrate how easy it really is to shift to renewables, and how fast renewable systems can be deployed.
Join our energy [R]evolution by signing up at www.berani.greenpeace.or.id
Therese Salvador, Media Campaigner, Greenpeace Philippines, +639178228734
Hindun Mulaika, Climate and Renewable Energy campaigner, Greenpeace Indonesia, +628118407113
Hikmat Soeriatanuwijaya, Media Campaigner, Greenpeace Indonesia, +628111805394
Photo and video requests:
Debby Natalia, Assistant Media Campaigner, Greenpeace Indonesia, +628111928315
Godi Utama, Video Producer, Greenpeace Indonesia, +628118164230