This study investigates the potential of bioethanol production and fossil fuel substitution using sugarcane feedstock in Indonesia. Current production practices, government biofuel policies (esp. mandatory blending targets), and sugar self-sufficiency are simulated to project the total potential of fuel ethanol and land requirements in the timeframe between 2015 and 2025.
At present conditions, 450 million liters bioethanol can be annually produced in Indonesia using sugarcane molasses, a low-value co-product. This gives only a marginal contribution equivalent to 1% of the total gasoline consumption in 2015. The study examines the ethanol production potential after domestic sugar self-sufficiency is achieved by 2020. In 2015, 0.71 Mha land were required for sugarcane cultivation in order to meet a 2% blend mandate i.e. 0.68 billion liters (BL) ethanol using only cane-molasses. Juice ethanol is needed to meet the blending targets set for 2020 (i.e., 4.45 BL ethanol) and 2025 (i.e., 11.48 BL ethanol). This translates into sugarcane feedstock obtained from 1.60 Mha to 2.76 Mha land, respectively.
The study also evaluates how improved resource efficiency can be achieved, exploring the bioelectricity production potential from sugarcane biomass, improvements in yields, and modernization of sugarcane mills. The results highlight how the use of established technologies and production methods can help develop agro-industries in the sugar ethanol segment of Indonesia.