Executive Intelligence Review


After Decades of Political Sabotage, Indonesia May Go Nuclear

June 27, 2018 (EIRNS)—Indonesia created its atomic energy agency, BATAN, in 1964. Not long afterwards, Edward Teller delivered a series of lectures on nuclear science in Indonesia, to help the country lay the basis for a nuclear energy future. Indonesia has three nuclear research reactors, the first, under Atoms for Peace. And has clearly developed much of the needed human capital to build nuclear power plants. Now, after decades of delay, Indonesia may finally go nuclear

Nuclear energy advocate, Bob Effendi, who is a member of Indonesian President Joko Widodo’s National Economic and Industry Committee, has taken on the arguments of the opposers. Effendi challenges the widely-held idea that coal and gas reserves give Indonesia a virtually limitless supply of fuel. The former oil man states reserves will be depleted by 2034-40, and that renewables have a potential of only 15% of what it is claimed to be. Indonesia needs nuclear.

Instead of arguing with the opposition, Effendi proposes that the country circumvent any real and perceived problems with nuclear energy, and leapfrog over today’s uranium-fueled reactors, to revive molten salt reactor technology. That more efficient and safer nuclear technology was actually first investigated 60 years ago but never commercially developed anywhere, he reminds.

Over the past two years, President Widodo has re-evaluated his stand against nuclear energy, reports Asia Times. Indonesia has been discussing procuring a floating nuclear plant and a 10 MW experimental reactor from Russia, and may soon be ready to draw up a longer-term plan for a full-sized commercial plant, and finally, go nuclear.