4660.0 - Energy, Water and Environment Management, 2008-09 Quality Declaration 
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 30/07/2010  First Issue
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30 July, 2010
Embargoed: 11.30 am (AEST)

Australian businesses spend $75 billion on energy

Australian businesses spent $75.4 billion on energy during 2008-09, according to figures released today by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS). Fifty-five per cent of these businesses took measures to reduce their energy consumption, such as switching off equipment or activities related to reducing transport use. Twenty-one per cent of companies claimed that cost was the major barrier to improving their energy efficiency.

During 2008-09, energy expenditure by Australian business was dominated by electricity and non-renewable fuels. Eighteen billion dollars was spent on diesel, $13b on electricity, $6b on natural gas. A total of $29b was spent on other non-renewable fuels, largely crude oil used by the petroleum industry. In the same period, businesses spent $60m directly on renewable fuels (liquid biofuel, biogas, bagasse and wood/wood waste ), and a further $95m on GreenPower electricity (sourced from accredited hydroelectricity, wind power etc). This was less than 1 per cent of total expenditure on electricity by businesses.

Seven per cent of electricity generated (18,000 GWh) was sourced from renewables, with hydroelectricity contributing about two-thirds of this amount. The use of non-renewable fuels, coal, and coal by-products generated over 70% of electricity, followed by natural gas at 19%.

The ABS also released data today on water and other environmental management activities of Australian businesses. Twenty-two per cent of all Australian businesses undertook some type of water management practice, with 60% of large businesses (employing 200 or more persons) reporting one or more activities to manage their water use.

Further information is available in Energy, Water and Environment Management, 2008-09 (cat. no. 4660.0).

Media note:

Please ensure when reporting on ABS data that you attribute the Australian Bureau of Statistics (or ABS) as the source.