23 October 2013 — The City of Sydney has urged members of the NSW Parliament to reform outdated electricity regulations preventing the installation of low-carbon trigeneration electricity plants.

At a hearing of the NSW Parliament’s Public Accounts Committee into trigeneration, the City of Sydney’s Chief Development Officer Energy and Climate Change, Allan Jones, said the City’s views were echoed by major businesses groups that want to bring more efficient energy systems to Australia.

“Trigeneration is a proven way to produce electricity locally, and not only slash carbon emissions but reduce energy costs at the same time,” Mr Jones said.

“While the current regulations allow installation of a trigeneration plant in a single building, they make it very difficult to install bigger, more efficient plants, which could supply electricity to a cluster of neighbouring buildings because of the prohibitive cost of transporting electricity short distances.

“The way the regulations work now, the network charges to move electricity across the road can be as large as bringing electricity on the network all the way down from the Hunter Valley.

“In many other countries regulations that make these plants more economically viable have led to the installation of thousands of megawatts of trigeneration power and significantly slashed carbon emissions.

“Trigeneration networks in the US, UK, Russia, China, Germany, India and Japan offer a cheaper and cleaner alternative to coal-fired power, proving this is a safe and reliable way to produce local electricity. There is currently more than 330 gigawatts of electricity produced worldwide using trigeneration. With the rest of the world moving in this direction, it’s time for Australia to join the 21st century on this critical issue.”

Read the City’s submission to the inquiry into cogeneration and trigeneration in New South Wales.