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100% renewable energy goals within reach for New Zealand businesses

New Zealand companies aiming for 100% renewable energy can now use energy certificates to achieve their ambitions.

The global RE100 initiative now recognises the New Zealand Energy Certificate System (NZECS), meaning that New Zealand businesses can purchase energy certificates to meet their RE100 commitment of sourcing 100% renewable electricity.

“Investors and customers want to know that companies are operating responsibly”, says Tim Middlehurst, Chief Executive of Certified Energy, which manages the NZECS.

“Energy certificates are the most popular way for businesses globally to reduce their carbon emissions, accounting for over 40% of renewable energy use by RE100 companies.

“Until now, New Zealand companies had very few ways to show they were sourcing renewable energy, apart from building their own energy generation on site. Now if they are part of the RE100 initiative, like businesses such as Suncorp, Pernod Ricard or Westpac, they can contribute to achieving that wider renewable energy commitment.”

Suncorp New Zealand is one New Zealand business that has adopted a Certified Renewable Energy product through Meridian Energy.

“We wanted to find an energy solution that aligned with our commitment to sustainable growth, and demonstrated our support of renewable electricity generation in New Zealand,” says Roschelle Marshall, Corporate Responsibility Manager at Suncorp New Zealand. 

“Suncorp joined the RE100 initiative in June 2020, committing to source 100% of its electricity from renewable energy by 2025. Investing in NZECS certification enables our New Zealand business to report our Scope 2 electricity emissions as zero, five years ahead of our RE100 and Climate Leaders Coalition commitments." 

“The RE100 initiative has high recognition among investors for credible renewable energy claims, and so New Zealand companies without an overseas presence can now join the initiative and compete on a level playing field”, says Tim Middlehurst.  

“Those leading New Zealand companies who have set Science-Based Targets for reducing their emissions, such as Fisher & Paykel Healthcare, New Zealand Post and Toitū Envirocare, can now unlock the carbon reductions granted by energy certificates to achieve their target. And energy certificates can help companies reduce their Scope 2 emissions in line with GHG standards to meet corporate reporting requirements, as well as help with meeting the Climate Leaders Coalition pledge. 

“While over 80% of electricity generated in New Zealand is renewable, it is all supplied via the national grid, and so there has previously been no way for companies to report their electricity use as zero carbon. Using corporate buying power to support renewable energy will accelerate New Zealand’s transition to zero-carbon electricity.”

Notes for Editors

RE100 is a global corporate leadership initiative bringing together influential businesses committed to 100% renewable electricity, such as Apple, IKEA and Danone. It is led by The Climate Group in partnership with CDP, as part of the We Mean Business coalition.  

The RE100 technical criteria states that “RE100 companies can achieve 100% renewable electricity by making claims to: [...]

* Purchased renewable electricity sourced from generators and suppliers in the market. This includes direct purchases from specific generators (e.g. power purchase agreements), which can be located onsite or offsite. It also includes retail purchases from suppliers and utilities, and the purchase of stand-alone (“unbundled”) energy attribute certificates."

RE100 signatories with a New Zealand presence: ANZ, Bay WA (Turners and Growers), Kingspan, JCDecaux, Fujitsu, Microsoft, Pernod Ricard, PricewaterhouseCoopers, QBE, Ricoh, Suncorp, Unilever and Westpac. 

New Zealand companies that have set a science-based target: Auckland Airport, Contact Energy, Fisher & Paykel Healthcare, Fletcher Building, New Zealand Post, SKYCITY Entertainment Group, thinkstep-anz and Toitū Envirocare.  

New Zealand companies committed to a science-based target: Kiwi Property Group, Ports of Auckland, Synlait Milk and The Warehouse Group.

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