Our greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) are representative of the scale and capacity of our manufacturing plants, in particular the energy-intensive manufacture of ammonia-derived products, including urea, ammonium nitrate, ammonium sulphate and ammonium phosphate for the explosives and fertiliser markets, all of which require natural gas as a feedstock for production with carbon dioxide being liberated during the process. Natural gas is also used as an energy source. Carbon dioxide is also liberated during the acidulation of phosphate rock in the manufacture of phosphorus fertilisers.
Globally, 95% of our GHG emissions relate directly to our manufacturing production.
During FY2010/11 our recorded (Scope 1 [direct] and 2 [indirect]) absolute GHG emissions were 2.3 million tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2-e). This figure includes 1.9 million tonnes of Scope 1 [direct] emissions and O.4 million tonnes of Scope 2 [indirect] emissions.
This is a reduction of 0.5 million tonnes, compared to FY2009/10, which is largely attributable to reduced emissions from our North American operations due to:
Greenhouse Gas Emissions
Our Scope 1 and Scope 2 GHG emissions will increase when our new ammonium nitrate facility at Moranbah in Queensland, Australia, is commissioned in mid-2012. We have abatement plans in place to ensure this is an emissions efficient plant. Energy and emissions data are entered by all Australian sites into the central SHAERS database. The data is obtained from utility bills, except where electricity is produced from heat generated by manufacturing. Electricity generated from natural gas at remote sites is metered on site and this is also entered into the database. Sites in other countries generating material levels of emissions will commence entering data into this database in FY2011/12. Data for our sites in North America and Europe were supplied separately this year. North America did not supply data about minor emissions from sources such as diesel in forklifts, small boilers, etc.
We also supply data regarding our Australian energy consumption and the gas emissions associated with the manufacture of fertiliser to the Fertiliser Industry Federation of Australia (www.fifa.asn.au) each year, which is published as part of their annual consolidated Public Environment Report. Details of emissions are also supplied to the International Fertiliser Association (www.fertilizer.org) for consolidated public reporting.
IPL is defined as a large emitter under the Australian National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting System (NGERS) and has a requirement to report annually on energy and greenhouse gas emissions associated with more than 50 sites throughout Australia. Direct and indirect emissions from our Australian operations are reported to the Government under this national initiative, which began in 2009.
We have also participated in the Carbon Disclosure Project since 2009. Our submission is publicly available on our website and at www.cdproject.net.
Within IPL many emission-reduction projects are under way, most being site-based. For example, our Explosives business in the United States changed their shipping procedures for recycled emulsion to make use of the return run of production deliveries. Previously, materials that were being recycled and returned to manufacturing sites for use as raw materials were shipped on a dedicated bulk hauler. A review of the transportation fleet operations optimised haul lines and was able to release space on trucks returning from sites that generate or process the recyclable materials to the manufacturing sites that consume it. This optimisation has reduced transportation costs and fuel consumption by nearly half, with a round trip from Saratoga Springs, Utah to Cheyenne, Wyoming being over 1,500 km.
Similarly, a planned Explosives site in the Pilbara region of Western Australia will reduce transport-related emissions due to the reduced distance required to transport explosives to mining sites in this remote area.
At our site in Mt Isa, Queensland, Australia, waste heat generated during the production of sulphuric acid is used to produce approximately 71,000 MW of CO2-e-free electricity per year.
Several of our products act to directly reduce pollutants and greenhouse gas emissions, while others do so indirectly. For example, the use of urea in selective catalytic reduction in diesel engines reduces the outputs of nitrogen oxides (NOx) which react with sunlight to cause smog. NOx emissions are reduced by spraying exhaust fumes with urea inside the catalytic converter. This causes a chemical reaction that converts nitrogen oxides into harmless nitrogen and water.
The use of our 'Green Urea' fertiliser product reduces GHG emissions in agriculture, with an inhibitor delaying the hydrolysis of urea into nitrogen forms (such as N2O) that may enter the atmosphere during volatilisation. It's estimated that the level of reduction is approximately 50%, but this is difficult to quantify due to the effects of precipitation and application techniques. Agronomy services and education are also provided to customers to increase knowledge and maximise emissions reductions.
In May 2011, we announced the formation of a new agronomy group, the Agronomy Community. This group of over 200 plant nutrition agronomists aims to advance the science of plant nutrition among researchers and agronomists to help Australian farmers improve the efficiency of fertiliser use for better performing crops and pastures, while reducing greenhouse gas emissions associated with agricultural practices.