19 October 2023
Transpower company Energy Market Services (EMS) has been accredited to issue International Renewable Energy Certificates (I-REC) for electricity produced in New Zealand.
I-RECs are a form of Energy Attribute Certificate that businesses can use in their Scope 2 emissions reporting under Greenhouse Gas Protocol 2 (GHGP2). The system is governed by the International Renewable Energy Certificate Standard Foundation (I-REC Standard).
EMS Development Manager Quintin Tahau said New Zealand businesses and government agencies are increasingly wanting to demonstrate that the electricity they use is from renewable sources, in line with international trends.
“By buying these I-RECs from local renewable energy generators, they can show in their emissions reporting that every electron they use is matched with an electron that has been produced from a renewable source,” he said.
I-RECs work by verifying the output and attributes of each megawatt hour (MWh) generated from renewable sources such as wind, solar, hydro, and geothermal. Renewable generators in New Zealand will be able to request that EMS issue them an I-REC matching the amount of renewable energy they produce, with one certificate equal to one megawatt-hour.
Mr Tahau said a renewable electricity generator can either retain or sell its I-RECs on to New Zealand businesses who can use them in Greenhouse Gas Scope 2 reporting.
“This creates an important additional revenue source for renewable electricity generators, making investment in the sector more attractive,” he said.
“They can also be used to complement corporate Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs) between generators and major users of electricity, driving new investment in renewable generation.”
EMS received accreditation from I-REC Standard because of its well-established grid metering service, which allows it to authenticate the volume of energy produced at registered generation sites.
It adds to a suite of energy data and market services that EMS has introduced for public and private sector entities in the industry since it was created by Transpower in 1994. These services range between electricity data, financial transmission rights, and metering at both retail and grid levels.
“We are constantly creating and evolving our services to meet the growing needs of our customers, and the I-REC issuer service was an opportunity that made a lot of sense for us to pursue and could be built on our current capabilities,” Mr Tahau said.
“There is an increasing demand for renewable energy certificates that are internationally recognised and align with greenhouse gas reporting standards. We are fortunate to have strong metering experience and existing processes that are needed for issuing these certificates, and we are excited to start working with customers and help them understand how they can participate.”
Registration of interest is now open to customers, and EMS will be providing more information on the sign-up process in the months ahead.
More about I-RECs
Headquartered in the Netherlands, I-REC was founded in 2015 and formed the International REC Standard Foundation (I-REC Standard), a non-profit organisation that provides a robust standard for energy attribute tracking systems.
The I-REC Standard is acknowledged by major reporting frameworks such as GHGP, CDP, and RE100 as a reliable backbone for credible and auditable tracking instruments.