Stockland trades energy across property portfolio with Energy Bay

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To facilitate inter-asset energy trading between Stockland’s properties, Stockland has agreed to lease rooftop space from its properties to distributed energy resources company Energy Bay for 30 years.

Energy Bay will purchase Stockland’s existing ~17 MWp of solar panels already installed on the property developer’s town centre locations. Energy Bay has agreed to then install an additional ~34 MWp of solar infrastructure across Stockland’s assets by 2025 and to exclusively sell that energy to Stockland for 15 years at agreed rates.

Stockland’s Executive General Manager, Workplace, Emlyn Keane, said the partnership allows Stockland to use its own rooftops rather than requiring additional land for solar farms. This allows Stockland to avoid the premium cost of renewable energy power purchasing agreements.

“The use of our existing commercial property assets combined with our $6.4 billion logistics pipeline will see approximately 250,000 square metres of solar panels installed on our roofs, the equivalent of around 35 football fields,” Keane said.

The scheme allows energy to be traded among Stockland assets, which number more than 50 properties, making use of the abundant roof space and low energy usage at Stockland’s logistics and warehouse properties so that excess energy generated can be used at other properties across the Stockland Group that include residential, workplace and retail locations.

Stockland properties include retail centres

Image: Stockland

Energy Bay Chief Executive Officer James Doyle said “through this partnership, Energy Bay will develop, install, and operate a major renewable energy platform, right on the rooftop of Stockland’s vast commercial assets, on-selling the energy produced back to Stockland at a competitive price point.”

Established in 2016, Energy Bay works with its subsidiary Solar Bay, which specialises in providing renewable energy infrastructure for commercial and industrial properties.

In April 2020, Solar Bay committed $350 million to a solar buyback initiative to fund solar projects in the commercial and industrial sectors throughout Australia and the Asia Pacific. Solar Bay’s offerings include electricity supply agreements, battery storage, electric vehicle charging infrastructure and demand response services.

Both Energy Bay and Stockland have strong background in finance and know the value of environment, social and governance (ESG) reporting, which is rapidly becoming as important for a company’s financial health as its financial reports.

The agreement with Energy Bay will not only secure renewable energy resources but also allow Stockland to significantly reduce its scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions – a key element of ESG reporting. The first two, scope 1 and 2 emissions, are caused by a company’s direct operations, which will be diminished with the provision of renewable energy facilitated by Energy Bay and Solar Bay.

Scope 3 emissions – those caused upstream and downstream of a company’s activities in interaction with both their suppliers and customers – can also be reduced thanks to this collaboration.

The two companies say that as the partnership progresses, Stockland will explore how its tenants can drive down their emissions, reducing Stockland’s scope 3 emissions as well. The expectation here is that Stockland will be able to halve its scope 3 emissions by 2030.

According to Stockland, prior to the agreement with Energy Bay, it had already achieved a 13% reduction of emissions across its commercial property portfolio since the 2020 financial year, which exceeded its own targets of 10% and 80% since 2006. The property giant said this was due to its steadily growing onsite renewable energy generation. The agreement with Energy Bay should take this to a whole other level, enabling Stockland to reach its target of net zero scope 1 and 2 emissions in 2025.

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