Energy & renewables
Reduce our greenhouse gas emissions and generate more renewable energy.
Reducing our carbon footprint and increasing our generation of renewable energy is not only good for the environment it’s good for our business too. The less energy we have to buy makes our business more efficient and having our own energy means we have the security of energy right on our doorstep.
Over the last 11 years the trend in our overall emissions has been downwards even though they have fluctuated over the past few years – as they can be affected by weather, operational conditions and the carbon content of the UK's electricity supply. In 2015/16, our carbon footprint totalled 454,857 tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent, 22% below our 2005/06 baseline.
This year we have reviewed our carbon strategy and set a new challenging target aligned to our investment plans up to 2020. The target is to achieve a 50 per cent reduction on the 2005/06 baseline and to continue to reduce emissions to 60% by 2035.
Our carbon footprint over the last 11 years
We have plans to significantly increase our renewable generation over the next few years, with a target of generating around 35 per cent of our electricity consumption by 2020. Our energy team are working hard to identify suitable projects and sort out all the technical details.
Our renewable energy production in 2015/16 was 138 GWh, representing 17 per cent of our electricity consumption in the year. Most of the energy we generate on site is used to power our works, with some of the excess being put into the national grid. This reduces our energy bill, and allows us to access Government incentives.
We have ambitious plans to go even further with our renewable energy generation. Our first 500kW turbine is now generating power at our Fleetwood treatment works. This facility is also home to one of the biggest solar panel installations in the North West.
During 2015/16 we installed Europe’s first commercial scale floating solar array at Godley, in Manchester. The installation covers an area equivalent to the size of six football pitches, with the 12,000 panels floating upon 30,000 floats. The 3MW solar PV installation at Godley aims to generate 35% of the water treatment works’ annual power requirements, or the equivalent of 800 homes worth of electricity per year. This should contribute to keeping our future energy costs down and benefit water bills – good news for both shareholders and customers.
We have been including our carbon emissions in our annual financial statements for several years. Under mandatory carbon reporting regulations for listed companies, we have included more information on the breakdown of our emissions in our annual report.
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