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ENGIE, Springfield City Group publish Australia’s first Zero Net Energy Road Map

Greater Springfield residents will see at least 30% of the city reserved as green space, have widespread access to electric vehicle (EV) charging stations and a hydrogen bus network, and see 100% of their power delivered through renewable sources. These are just some of the key goals in a landmark roadmap – the first of its kind for an Australian city – released today.

The road map will establish Greater Springfield as the world’s greenest city by 2038.

Developed by Tractebel, a world-leading engineering company for sustainable and carbon-neutral projects, with the support of ENGIE Impact, the solutions and services company that’s accelerating sustainability transformation worldwide, draws on insights from people-centric urban environments being developed around the globe and recognises the vital role clean energy plays in creating sustainable, cost-efficient and resilient communities.

In addition, comprehensive urban planning, mobility, building and digital strategies will support Greater Springfield’s development of an inclusive, productive and attractive city for both residents and businesses.

With a population of 45,000, masterplanned around connective pillars of health, education and technology and with innovation underpinning the emerging city’s livability, Greater Springfield is perfectly placed to rapidly implement the strategy.

A strategic alliance between ENGIE and Springfield City Group was signed in 2018. During the last year Tractebel has undertaken a comprehensive assessment of the city to establish the project needs, develop the action plan, and map the potential development scenarios for the city.

Starting with a business as usual (for comparison) approach, the road map also outlines what will be needed to achieve zero net electricity, where all electricity is provided by renewables; and zero carbon, where all energy (including fuel for vehicles and heating/cooling) is provided by renewables.

To achieve both zero net electricity and ultimately zero net carbon the road map outlines an action plan covering five key pillars:

  • Urban – Maintaining 30% green space; developing urban agriculture and green transport routes;
  • Mobility – Reduction from 1.98 to 0.8 cars per household while ramping up EV charging infrastructure to enable accelerated EV adoption; creating sustainable last-mile solutions (e.g. electric scooters and bicycles); transitioning to hydrogen buses and developing shared transport solutions;
  • Buildings – Using bioclimatic design, solar protection, and district cooling; delivering public education programs on efficiency;
  • Energy – Establishing 100% local renewable share; putting solar panels on all available rooftops; developing hydrogen refueling; implementing energy storage;
  • Digital – Becoming a world leader in innovative and smart city solutions.

In line with the road map development, infrastructure work is under way within Greater Springfield. The rollout of city-wide rooftop solar has begun with the key buildings including the Orion Shopping Centre and the Springfield Tower among the first to be equipped. The rollout of EV charging stations has also begun and will put Springfield among the first urban areas in the country equipped to handle large-scale EV adoption.

The road map will be reviewed every two to three years as the journey to carbon neutrality continues.

Maha Sinnathamby, Chairman and Founder of Greater Springfield said:

“We have one chance - and the responsibility to our residents - to get this right and be an ongoing example for others to follow. The focus on efficient and sustainable energy production, storage, and integration with the community has never been more important for Australia and for us. I’m confident that ENGIE can assist us to be a world leader in innovative and smart city solutions.”

Tractebel General Manager, Urban, Charles-Edouard Delpierre, said

“This is a major milestone in the journey to make Greater Springfield Australia’s greenest city. The road map is the result of a year’s worth of research and consultation and represents an ambitious but practical plan to make Greater Springfield zero net energy by 2038.

“We are proud to be delivering the road map in partnership with Springfield City Group. ENGIE and Tractebel are uniquely positioned to build tailored strategies that optimise and operationalise the value of a customer’s assets and provide financing options, engineering expertise and operational excellence.”