Veolia's nationwide green energy project launched

Veolia Australia and New Zealand

Monday, 19 December, 2022

Veolia's nationwide green energy project launched

Veolia has launched a nationwide decarbonisation project across its Australian operation to reach ecological transformation.

To build the company’s capacity for behind-the-meter energy independence, the $20m project will see rooftop solar panels and commercial battery stations installed across Veolia’s eligible Australian facilities. The outputs will power Veolia’s offices and operational activities, reducing its reliance on fossil fuels and creating energy resilience.

Grant Winn, Veolia’s COO for industrial and energy, said that harnessing a renewable energy solution was an important part of the company’s mission to net zero and a way to address local energy stability, availability and price.

The project will also see electric vehicle (EV) charging stations installed to support employees wishing to transition to electric cars, as well as create capacity for electric fleet potential.

“We’re evaluating the feasibility of transitioning our vehicle fleet to be gas, battery or hydrogen powered in the future,” Winn said. “Across hundreds of vehicles nationwide, that’s a substantial investment and one we need to be ready for. By installing charging stations now, we’ll be a step ahead if we ultimately move down the electrification path.”

The first phase of the project includes three facilities in Queensland. In total, around 636 commercial-grade photovoltaic panels, 180 kWh of batteries and six charging stations will be installed. This will generate 507 MWh of renewable energy annually.

The solar panels, batteries and charging stations will be interlinked and part of a coordinated platform that will connect to Veolia’s Hubgrade technology, which will allow the company to take control of its energy chain through vertical integration.

Winn said the versatility of the technology has advantages, such as giving individual sites the power to vary their energy usage and direct it to other facilities when needed.

“The batteries onsite will store energy for use overnight,” he said. “When the sun goes down, we won’t be left in the dark; we’ll simply switch to our battery supply to keep us moving. And if another facility has a need for more energy, we’ll have the flexibility to divert from one site to another.”

According to Winn, the project will save 8000 t of carbon dioxide from entering the atmosphere, the equivalent of removing 2213 diesel-powered cars off the road every year.

With 40 eligible sites, the initiative would deliver an estimate of 4.6 MWh from batteries and 8.2 MW from solar photovoltaic panels. This will produce 11.2 GWh of energy per annum.

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