Abatement certificates delivering extra cash to Investa

07 Sep 2001Archived News Energetics in the News

Assisted by Energetics Pty Ltd, Investa Property Group has improved its return on energy efficiency investments by successfully applying for greenhouse abatement certificates on a number of its buildings that have improved their performance.

FMexpress: Tuesday 7th September 2004

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Head of Facilities Management, Kevin Dickinson told FM Express Investa has won NSW greenhouse abatement certificates (NGACs) for four buildings in its NSW portfolio that have achieved improved Australian Building Greenhouse Ratings.

He said the company expects improved ABGR ratings on its remaining 11 NSW buildings to deliver further NGACs next year.

He declined to put a dollar value on the revenue Investa has received through NGACs thus far, but said it was significant and a further incentive for the company to continue striving for improved ABGR ratings.

NGACS available when savings locked in

NSW property owners and facilities managers can apply for NGACs if they undertake any activities that result in reduced consumption of electricity in their portfolio, and sell the certificates to retailers on the open market. One NGAC can be created for every tonne of CO2 saved.

In this case, Investa was assisted by energy consulting firm Energetics Pty Ltd.

Under the NSW Greenhouse Gas Abatement Scheme, electricity retailers are required to meet a greenhouse emission target, or face a penalty. The scheme aims to bring the emissions from the NSW electricity sector to 5 per cent below 1990 per capita levels by 2007 and remain at that level until 2012.

If retailers do not reduce their average emissions to the benchmark level they incur a penalty of $10.50 per tonne of CO2 for the amount of the shortfall, which after taxes amounts to about $15 per tonne.

The main way they can reduce their per capita emissions is by purchasing NSW greenhouse abatement certificates (NGACs) from property owners and surrendering these to the scheme administrator - the Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal of NSW (IPART) - when they lodge their compliance report. These certificates are currently trading at $10.65 - a significant saving on the penalty amount.

Streamlined process makes effort worthwhile

A $500 upfront fee to apply for certificates on each individual property combined with the cost of the audit by an accredited assessor had made applying for NGACs highly bureaucratic and more trouble than it was worth for some property owners.

As a result, the scheme administrator and the NSW Department of Energy, Utilities and Sustainability (DEUS) streamlined the Greenhouse Gas Abatement Scheme with the ABGR system earlier this year, and the number of NGACs available to a property may be determined by improving its accredited ABGR rating.

New arrangements allow property owners to make one application to create certificates for an entire portfolio of buildings - as Investa did recently.

A spokesperson for DEUS told FM Express ABGR accredited assessors "will be a key link between the property sector and the Greenhouse Gas Scheme administrator".

"When a building demonstrates improved energy efficiency through a higher accredited ABGR rating, the accredited assessor will automatically provide their customers with the number of certificates able to be created," she said.

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