Developing renewable energy
We are working to develop new renewable generation capacity through our Roaring 40s joint venture. Roaring 40s is positioned to invest in significant new renewable energy generation in Australia as soon as a favourable legislative framework is in place.
We are finding developments within our existing hydropower system and enhancing our assets to increase the system’s generation capacity through the 1000 GWh project.
Developing products and services
The establishment of a carbon emission trading scheme will provide Hydro Tasmania with opportunities to extend its products and services in both energy environmental products and consulting services. We already offer consulting products and services to assess and meet obligations to reduce carbon emissions and meet renewable energy targets, to plan and implement energy efficiency programs and to plan and develop new renewable energy installations.
Reducing our carbon footprint
Hydro Tasmania’s aim is for our operations to be carbon neutral by 2012.
Our aim is to reach this goal helped by the planned closure of our only gas-fired power station which is at the end of its operational life. Other actions are to reduce our energy use and to phase in the purchase offsets where we are not able to find a way to avoid or reduce energy use further.
Energy use reductions were targeted for the Bell Bay Power Station and:
- diesel-fired power on King and Flinders islands in Bass Strait
- our buildings and facilities
- our vehicle fleet.
This year we estimate that we more than halved our total emissions compared to the previous year when total emissions were 725 376 tonnes of CO2 equivalents. Bell Bay accounted for 97 per cent. (The full 2007/08 data set were completed in October 2008 and published on our web site.) In 2008/09, our emissions were in the vicinity of 342 000 tonnes of CO2 equivalents with Bell Bay contributing 94 per cent. (The verified emissions data will be published on our web site by December 2009.) See results in figure 2710.
Despite this year’s result we are behind our target for 2008/09 of 22 per cent reduction from the base year of 2005/06.
The offset purchase plan is under way. We started with staff air travel emissions in 2007/08. At 30 June 2009 we were finalising the purchase of offsets for these and were calculating the 2008/09 data to start the next phase for Hydro Tasmania Consulting’s emissions. The plan is to include emissions from our vehicle fleet in 2010/11.
10Hydro Tasmania measures and reports on the following emissions:
- Scope 1 emissions: natural gas use, Bass Strait islands’ diesel use, vehicle fleet fuel use, SF6 leakage from switchgear.
- Scope 2 emissions: electricity consumed by buildings and facilities and pumps and power stations.
- Scope 3 emissions: hire car use, shuttle bus use, staff commuting to Cambridge office, aircraft hire and commercial flights.
All Australian based scope 1 and 2 emissions are calculated using NGERS methodologies. Non-Australian based scope 1 and 2 emissions and scope 3 emissions are calculated using best known practices and include estimates when precise data is not easily obtained - for example the distance travelled by staff commuting to Cambridge is estimated.
Bass Strait islands
In 2008/09, the greenhouse gas emissions from the Bass Strait islands power supply were around 47 per cent of our total emissions excluding Bell Bay Power Station, at 10 238 tonnes of CO2 equivalents.
Diesel is used in the Bass Strait islands’ electrical power systems. In 2008/09, we reduced our use of diesel fuel by upgrading plant with more efficient diesel units (two on King Island and one on Flinders Island), see figure 28. We also commissioned trials of a resistor bank and upgraded the control system to increase the efficiency of wind generation on King Island.
We developed a plan to enhance the islands’ power systems to improve the reliability of the power supply by 2012, and at the same time reduce dependence on diesel by 50 per cent and reduce greenhouse gas emission by greater than 70 per cent. The program includes a project for wind, resistor bank and control system for Flinders Island, as well as more wind capacity and associated integration technology on King Island, and bio-fuel substitution for both islands’ power systems. However, these projects are subject to the implementation of Government renewable energy policies and securing capital.
Buildings and facilities
We undertook an energy audit of Hydro Tasmania’s building and facilities in 2007/08 which identified opportunities to improve energy efficiency and to reduce energy use, and have begun to capture these opportunities with the result that energy use fell in buildings and facilities this year, see figure 29.
In 2008/09 we installed energy efficient lighting in the Hobart office and encouraged a change in staff behaviour through greater awareness of energy use in our buildings. The biggest contribution was Hydro Tasmania Consulting’s Tasmanian staff being together in one building for the first full year after being accommodated in five separate locations. The building at Cambridge is a 5-Star Green Star energy-rated building.
We also obtained a capital allocation for 2009/10 to improve the energy efficiency of our buildings and facilities by implementing local projects to replace or improve inefficient air conditioning and circulation systems, insulation and heaters. We are also encouraging staff to put forward ideas that will result in a reduction in energy consumption.
In 2008/09, Hydro Tasmania continued to replace six-cylinder vehicles in our fleet with four-cylinder vehicles. We also adopted the Tasmanian government minimum standard for vehicle emissions as policy, increased the use of people movers and car sharing for travel, especially in remote areas, and provided driver education to increase awareness of fuel-efficient driving techniques. As a result, the emissions associated with our vehicle fleet have fallen over the year.
Further reductions will come from replacing the remaining eight six-cylinder vehicles within the next two years and providing further driver education to raise awareness of fuel usage, see figure 30. We will also develop further initiatives to increase car sharing.