Celukan Bawang power station

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Celukan Bawang power station is an operating power station of at least 426-megawatts (MW) in Celukan Bawang - Kab Buleleng, Gerokgak, Buleleng, Bali, Indonesia with multiple units, some of which are not currently operating. It is also known as 华电巴厘岛电站.


Table 1: Project-level location details

Plant name Location Coordinates (WGS 84)
Celukan Bawang power station Celukan Bawang - Kab Buleleng, Gerokgak, Buleleng, Bali, Indonesia -8.196295, 114.851568 (exact)

The map below shows the exact location of the power station.

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Unit-level coordinates (WGS 84):

  • Unit 3, Unit 2, Unit 4, Unit 1, Unit 5: -8.196295, 114.851568

Project Details

Table 2: Unit-level details

Unit name Status Fuel(s) Capacity (MW) Technology Start year Retired year
Unit 3 operating coal - unknown 142 subcritical 2015
Unit 2 operating coal - unknown 142 subcritical 2015
Unit 4 cancelled coal - unknown 330 subcritical
Unit 1 operating coal - unknown 142 subcritical 2015
Unit 5 cancelled coal - unknown 330 subcritical

Table 3: Unit-level ownership and operator details

Unit name Owner
Unit 3 PT Merryline International, PT General Energy Indonesia
Unit 2 PT Merryline International, PT General Energy Indonesia
Unit 4 PT Merryline International, PT General Energy Indonesia
Unit 1 PT Merryline International, PT General Energy Indonesia
Unit 5 PT General Energy Indonesia, PT Merryline International


The Celukan Bawang power station is a three-unit coal-fired power plant that was built by China Huadian in Bali. While reports of the size of the project differ, several reliable sources list this initial three-unit plant as being composed of three 142-MW coal-fired units, totaling 426 MW.[1][2][3]

Various sources refer to the plant as 380 MW, including the sponsor.[4]

In October 2010, the government of Indonesia signed a US$1.5 billion memorandum of understanding with two Chinese companies, China Huadian Engineering Corporation Ltd and China Huadian Development.[5] The project broke ground that same month.[6] The cost of the plant itself would be Rp. 7 trillion (US$761 million).[7] Both are subsidiaries of China Huadian Corporation.

Coal development in the context of China's economic push into Southeast Asia

The development of the Celukan Bawang power station is part of an strategic push by China's National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) to develop projects in Southeast Asia, with Indonesia a particular target of investment.[8] On January 1, 2010, China and the 10 nations that make up the Association of Southeast Asian Nationas (ASEAN) officially launched the China-ASEAN Free Trade Area.[8] According to Zhang Guobao, vice-mininster of NDRC, "China is encouraging domestic firms to invest in Indonesia by actively participating in electricity, coal and gas-oil projects."[8] According to the China Daily, Chinese projects in ASEAN countries are backed by capital and policy support from the central government.[8]

In 2011, construction was expected to be completed on a 350 MW coal plant in the Indonesian beach-resort town of Pelabuhan Ratu.[8]

As of late 2014, construction of the initial three units was apparently nearing completion, despite delays. In August 2015, the Indonesian papers reported that Units 1-3 had come on stream.[9]


Units 1-3 of the plant were built with an investment of US$880 million by the China Development Bank.[10] The plant was built by PT China Huadian Engineering, PT Merryline International, and PT General Energy Indonesia.[9][11]

Proposed expansion

Several news sources mention a proposed second-phase expansion of two 330-MW coal-fired units.[1]

On January 24, 2018, representatives of the Celukan Bawang community with Greenpeace Indonesia accompanied by legal counsel from YLBHI-LBH Bali filed a lawsuit against the Governor of Bali's decision (No. SK. 660.3 / 3985 / IV-A / DISPMPT) to grant an environmental permit for the 2 X 330 MW expansion. According to YLBHI-LBH Bali, the EIA evaluation was not holistic and did not have community involvement as required by law. Additionally, the groups argue the expansion was not included in the Indonesia National Electric Power Supply Plan (RUPTL 2017-2026) and that Bali has sufficient power capacity to meet its power demand.[12] The proposed expansion does not appear in the 2018-2027 long-range plan either.[13] In February 2019 residents of Celukan Bawang and Greenpeace Indonesia filed an appeal through the Denpasar Administrative Court to block construction of the expansion and have its permit revoked.[14]

In October 2019 Bali Governor I Wayan Koster asked Global Energy Bali to use gas instead of coal to fuel the plant.[15]

As of November 2020, there had been no further progress on the proposed expansion, and it appeared to be shelved. As of November 2022, the expansion was presumed to be cancelled.

Opposition, scandals and accidents

Huadian has long had disagreements with local communities about land acquisition.[16] In December 2013, February 2015, and apparently on other occasions, local residents have blocked the entrance to the construction site, complaining that some of the land being used on the project had never been fully acquired by Huadian and still belonged to them.[17][18] Also, people displaced by the construction have complained that they have not yet received title to the land that they were supposed to be given in compensation.[19]

Huadian has also been criticized for failing to use local laborers — 90% of the construction workers on the site are apparently foreign workers, many brought in without proper authorization.[16][17] In December 2012, immigration officials seized the passports of 75 illegal foreign workers at the site.[20]

In October 2012, members of the Buleleng Regency government threatened to shut down construction at the site until problems were resolved.[21] In April 2013, legislators from the Buleleng Legislative Council visited the construction site and found numerous violations, including use of heavy machinery without safety certificates and use of subsidized fuel in construction.[16]

In April 2018 Greenpeace released "Polluting Paradise," a report on the economic, public health, and environmental impacts of the plant. Among the problems cited were "inadequate land compensation due to improper and non-transparent processes, the destruction of livelihoods, especially to farmers and fishermen, which has impoverished the local community, environmental damage caused by coal waste residue on land and at sea, worsening public health with an increase in respiratory illnesses, and inadequate monitoring of the health impacts of the power plant."[22]

In June 2018 nine Indonesian and international environmental groups filed an amici curiae brief to Denpasar Administrative Court (PTUN), alleging that the project does not comply with the Environmental Protection and Environmental Law No.32 of 2009 and undermines Indonesia’s international climate commitment.[23]

In September 2018 Bali's new governor Wayan Koster pledged to pressure the plant's owners to power Units 4 and 5 with gas instead of coal.[24]

In May 2019 fishermen from Celukan Bawang staged a protest in Denpasar and claimed that pollution from the existing Celukan Bawang units was reducing their catch and making it harder to earn a living.[25]

In August 2022, nearly 10,000 tons of coal headed for the plant on a barge partially sunk in the Java sea because of bad weather. The event threatened major beach and water pollution.[26]

Environmental impact

A September 2019 article in Mongabay described the plant's negative impact on farming, fishing, and tourism in the area. Since the plant was commissioned in 2015 coconut harvests are down, fishing yields are down, and dolphins that drew tourists to the area have largely vanished from the bay adjacent to the plant.[27]

Power industry in Bali

According to an article in The Jakarta Post, the Celukan Bawang power station is part of an effort to overcome a deficit of electricity on Bali.[28] The island currently has access to 647.6 MW of electrical capacity:[29]

  • Pesanggaran diesel (11 units) - 70.754 MW
  • Pesanggara gas (4 units) - 125.45 MW
  • Gilimanuk gas (1 unit) - 133.8 MW
  • Pamaron gas (2 units) - 97.6 MW
  • Total generating capacity: 427.604 MW
  • Underwater cables (Ketapang-Gilimanuk) providing 220 MW from the Java grid. The Bali Cross Project will provide an additional 1,600 MW of capacity to Bali.

Project sold as "clean coal" power

According to one report, among the purposes of Bali Governor Made Mangku Pastika in traveling to China in 2010 was to determine whether the proposed coal plant would be a double or triple combustion project: "I wanted to know if [the project] is environmentally friendly. Double or triple? If it is single burn the result is sulfur which is still dangerous. If the byproducts are processed again the results are environmentally friendly."[7]

Alternative power sources

Articles and Resources


  1. 1.0 1.1 Pahami Kelistrikan Bali, AJI Denpasar Ajak Mahasiswa dan Pelajar Kunjungi Indonesia Power, Metro Bali, 23 Nov. 2014.
  2. Cukong PLTU Cilacap tak jelas, ESDM uji tuntas, InfoVesta, 27 Nov. 2014.
  3. "Two Chinese firms build Rp7 trillion worth of power plant in Buleleng, Bali," Indonesia Today, October 19, 2010
  4. "CASE STUDY: PT GENERAL ENERGY BALI," East Asia Capital Partners, accessed June 2016
  5. Komang Ervian, "2 Chinese firms to build new coal plant," The Jakarta Post, October 29, 2011
  6. Investor China Bangun PLTU Senilai Rp7 Triliun di Buleleng, Antara News, 19 Oct. 2010.
  7. 7.0 7.1 "Old King Coal to Soon Power Bali," Bali Update, November 1, 2010
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 8.3 8.4 Zhou Yan and Huang Zhaohua, "Indonesian 'gold rush'," China Daily, November 15, 2010
  9. 9.0 9.1 "Celukan Bawang coal power plant comes on stream in Bali," Republika Online, 12 August 2015
  10. Fueling Growth and Financing Risk, Boston University, May 2016, p. 17
  11. Ruigang Construction Holdings Co., Ltd. - Coal-fired power plant in Bali, Indonesia, Belt and Road, accessed January 2023
  12. "Masyarakat Ajukan Gugatan, Tolak Pengembangan PLTU Batu Bara," Greenpeace, 24 January, 2018
  13. Rencana Usaha Penyediaan Tenaga Listrik (RUPTL) 2018-2027, PT PLN Persero
  14. Sengketa Izin PLTU Celukan Bawang, Warga Ajukan Kasasi, Tempo.co, Feb. 11, 2019
  16. 16.0 16.1 16.2 Problems at Celukan Bawang power plant, Bali Daily, 2 Apr. 2013.
  17. 17.0 17.1 Sikapi IMB, Warga Tutup Akses Masuk PLTU Celukan Bawang, FM Radio Singaraja, 8 Feb. 2015.
  18. Polisi Upayakan Mediasi PLTU Dengan Warga, Metro Bali, 15 Dec. 2013.
  19. Janji PT General Energy Bali Tidak Terealisasi, Metro Bali, 29 Feb. 2012.
  20. Immigration Holds Passports of Foreign Workers, Bali Times, 3 Dec. 2012.
  21. Investor Mangkir Bupati Ancam Stop Proyek PLTU Celukan Bawang, Bali Post, 23 Oct. 2012.
  22. Polluting Paradise, Greenpeace, Apr. 15, 2018
  23. Friends of The Court: Government Must Assess Climate Change Impacts of Celukan Bawang Power Plant Expansion, CERA, Jun. 26, 2018
  24. Gubernur Bali yang Baru Minta PLTU Celukan Bawang Pakai Gas, Kumparan, Sep. 8, 2018
  25. Protes Proyek PLTU, Nelayan Celukan Bawang Ngadu Ke Denpasar, Radar Bali, May 17, 2019
  26. 9,700 tons of coal threaten Bali island waters and beach, Fleet Mon, August 24, 2022
  27. [ Nasib Warga Sekitar PLTU Celukan Bawang, Bakal Makin Sulit dengan Perluasan Pembangkit], Mongabay, Sep. 15, 2019
  28. "Thermal Power Plant Development: Bali," WhyGo Indonesia, 10 May 2007.
  29. PT INDONESIA POWER: Bali Business Unit Flyer, accessed March 2011

Additional data

To access additional data, including an interactive map of coal-fired power stations, a downloadable dataset, and summary data, please visit the Global Coal Plant Tracker on the Global Energy Monitor website.