Orica has entered into a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with solar developer Lightsource bp for renewable electricity.
The agreement is in line with Orica’s mission to be powered by 100 per cent renewable electricity by 2040.
Lightsource bp will use Orica’s PPA to underpin and expand its Wellington North solar farm in Dubbo, NSW.
The solar farm will generate a total of 915GWh of renewable electricity per year, saving over 730,000 metric tonnes of carbon emissions.
It will supply around 50 per cent of Orica’s Australian electricity needs.
This will enable Orica to reduce its global Scope 2 emissions by over 60,000 metric tonnes of carbon emissions annually – the equivalent of powering 19,000 NSW homes every year.
Globally, Orica’s proportion of electricity sourced from renewables will be around 30 per cent once Wellington North is fully operational.
This extension is expected to create over 400 jobs during construction and eight full time equivalent roles once fully operational in 2025.
Orica’s step towards 100 per cent renewable electricity builds on its existing target to reduce scope 1 and 2 GHG emissions by at least 40 per cent by 2030 and is in line the company’s 2050 net-zero ambition.
A key steppingstone includes the goal to have 60 per cent of operations powered by renewable electricity by 2030.
Going forward, Orica intends to transition its operations towards more renewable forms of energy to further decarbonise operations and enhance its competitiveness in a lower carbon economy.
“Over the coming years, Orica will proactively evolve its approach to energy procurement and secure renewable electricity partnerships to support this transition, prioritising offsite renewable generation projects to spur growth and jobs in the industry,” Orica chief financial and sustainability officer Christopher Davis said.
“As renewable electricity supply, pricing, reliability, and networks improve, Orica is now well positioned to confidently transition to higher proportions of renewable power use on commercial terms over the long term.”
Orica will continue to deploy onsite renewable infrastructure across its sites and offices globally.
The company will also continue to partner on new build renewable energy projects to amplify its contribution to sustainable global economic development.
“Contracting renewable electricity through strategic long term power purchase agreements will allow us to mitigate exposure to volatile electricity markets, while supporting local communities and making a meaningful impact towards achieving our sustainability targets,” Davis said.