Electricity generation still at the top of emissions list

  • The electricity sector remains the largest emitting industry in 2014-15, accounting for more than half (55.3 per cent) of all reported scope one emissions. The mining and manufacturing sectors also accounted for a further 20 per cent and 16.6 per cent of reported scope 1 emissions respectively.
  • Almost half (48.4 per cent) of Australia’s electricity is produced from black coal, with renewables accounting for 11.1 per cent of reported electricity production.

 

The Clean Energy Regulator has released the 2014-15 National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting data.

This year corporations reported 322 million tonnes of scope 1 greenhouse gas emissions, created as a direct result of an activity undertaken by one of their facilities.

“Australia’s top 10 emitters account for almost half of all reported emissions, with the electricity generation industry remaining as the top contributor of scope 1 emissions,” the Clean Energy Regulator chair Chloe Munro said.

Coal mining, oil and gas extraction and metal ore mining are the next highest contributing industries.

“Reported scope 1 emissions increased by 2 per cent, compared to the 2013-14 year,” Ms Munro said.

“This is largely attributable to emissions from the electricity sector.”

Each year, under the National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting Scheme, Australian corporations that meet certain thresholds are required to report their emissions and energy information to the Clean Energy Regulator.

The National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting Scheme covers around 60 per cent of Australia’s overall emissions. It does not capture emissions data from the agricultural, forestry, private vehicle and residential sectors or from facilities below the reporting threshold.

“This year we have published additional information specific to the electricity sector to make the data easier to interpret, and to assist the industry to prepare for the sectoral baseline under the safeguard mechanism, which will apply from 1 July 2016,” Ms Munro said.

Corporations are also required to report on scope 2 emissions which are created indirectly by a facility through the consumption of purchased electricity, heat or steam.

“We now have the benefit of seven years of national greenhouse and energy reporting data. This a rich resource to advance our understanding of greenhouse gas emissions, energy production and energy use across Australia,” Ms Munro said.