Is community renewable energy always just? Examining energy injustices and inequalities in rural Indonesia

Hilman Fathoni, Abidah Setyowati, James Prest

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Abstract

    Community-based renewable electricity projects have been increasingly regarded as a promising means to alleviate rural energy poverty through ensuring just and inclusive outcomes. However, limited studies have been carried out to investigate the socio-political dynamics of such initiatives and the extent to which they overcome energy injustices in the Global South. Drawing on two case studies from Sumba Island in Eastern Indonesia, this article seeks to critically understand how micro-politics of planning and implementing community-based renewable projects influence their energy justice implications on the ground. In this study, we deploy a contextualised analysis of energy justice to demonstrate how particular socio-historical dimensions shape contemporary energy injustices in a postcolonial setting such as Sumba Island. We argue that the persistence of apolitical framing of community-based energy access intervention runs the risk of perpetuating exclusions and inequalities in rural energy provision. To address energy injustices, it is important to shift away from the centralised mentality that still prevails in the development of community-based renewables in Indonesia and beyond.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1-9
    JournalEnergy Research & Social Science
    Volume71
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2020

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