Corporate Responsibility

Reducing our greenhouse gas emissions.

Last reviewed:
We’ve committed to making significant reductions to both our operational carbon footprint and our energy consumption, to help us become more sustainable and make sure we deliver for our customers. Our total net operational emissions, including outsourced activity, reduced by 230.1 kTCO2e to 277.3 kTCO2e# (507.4 kTCO2e in 2016/17).

The table below provide the relative intensity of emissions involved in delivering both our water and wastewater services to our customers:

 Service area
kgCO2e*
2015/16 2016/17#
2017/18#
Operational GHG emissions per Ml of treated water  273.0 141.2 24.6
Operational GHG emissions per Ml of waste water treated  303.1 225.4 135.3

In the penultimate year of this current AMP period, we’re also starting to explore options for developing our future carbon reduction targets beyond our current 34 per cent reduction on 1990 levels by 2020. These may include setting more broad objectives around increasing renewable electricity generation, not only from sludge but also other sources such as solar photovoltaics (PV). We’ll also look to broaden our energy targets to include heat as well as electricity.

*Scope 1 emissions refer to greenhouse gas emissions associated with the operation of our assets. Scope 2 emissions are emissions associated with the use of grid electricity.

#From October 2016 our net operational emissions account for the grid electricity we imported being 100% REGO accredited renewable. We use the government’s REGO (renewable energy guarantee of origin) accreditation scheme to demonstrate that the electricity we consume is from a renewable source.

During 2017/18 we generated and used 293GWh of renewable electricity, most of which (286GWh) came from the treatment of sludge - our best ever performance. This is set to increase as we expand our use of THP and the addition of our new Advanced Energy Recovery process. Increasing the amount of renewable energy we generate from sludge is helping to reduce our carbon emissions, reduce our reliance on grid electricity and make even better use of a valuable resource. Click on the case study below to find out more:

Whilst our current green tariff electricity supply and generation of renewable electricity reduces the impact of carbon emissions associated with the use of electricity, we still need to reduce our consumption of electricity to help reduce costs and impacts on customer bills. This is an ongoing focus for the business which requires a range of approaches to achieve the best results. Click on the case study below to find out more:

Looking forward.

We’ll continue to actively engage with our employees on our three clear and simple energy themes:

  1. Using less energy.
  2. Paying less for energy.
  3. Make more of our own renewable energy.
These three themes – ‘use less, pay less, make more’ - are integrated with our long term investment plans, applying them across the business and integrating them into the delivery of our current and future investments. This will also help us to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions.