Asahi secures 40,000 MWh of renewable energy from outback solar farm

July 20, 2023
By Rachel White
The 500-acre Clermont solar farm employs a single-axis solar tracking system to follow the sun’s trajectory for optimal energy generation

Asahi Beverages, owners of some of Australia’s most recognised drinks brands, has done an eight-year deal with energy retailer Flow Power to buy 40,000 megawatt hours of renewable energy annually.

The Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) brokered by Flow Power will give Asahi enough energy to power the production of their iconic drinks, including Victoria Bitter, Schweppes, Cool Ridge water and Solo and gets them one step closer to their goal of 100 per cent renewable energy by 2025.

Asahi will purchase 40,000 megawatt hours each year from a state-of-the-art solar farm located in Clermont, Queensland, an outback town renowned for its high heat and low rainfall that will supply the equivalent energy needed to power more than 5,700 homes and nearly 81,000 beer fridges a year.

John Tortora, Group Chief Procurement and Sustainability Officer at Asahi Beverages, said the deal with Flow Power is the perfect opportunity to harness Queensland’s ideal weather to make Australia’s favourite beverages.

“Asahi and Carlton & United Breweries have been producing iconic beverages in Australia for years, so to harness even more of the Queensland sun to help us make Australia’s favourite drinks means consumers can enjoy their preferred bottle or tinnie in a more sustainable way,” he said.

Weighing in on the deal, Queensland Premier The Hon. Annastacia Palaszczuk MP said: “Our Queensland Energy and Jobs Plan is helping businesses like Asahi Beverages set and meet their renewable energy targets and I congratulate them on their announcement.

“There are a number of exciting renewable energy projects happening across the state, supported by our Queensland SuperGrid which provides the backbone of our new energy system,” she said.

Solar power company WIRSOL owns the 500-acre Clermont farm, which employs a single-axis solar tracking system to follow the sun’s trajectory for optimal energy generation, delivering one of Australia’s highest per-unit energy yields.

In July 2022, Flow Power secured an 8.5-year PPA for 25.22 MW from Clermont. This deal with Asahi Beverages accounts for around 80% of Flow Power’s offtake.

Byron Serjeantson, COO of Flow Power, said the company is happy to support their long-term customer, Asahi, in their quest to improve the sustainability of their operations.

“Every year we see increasing numbers of businesses making the smart switch to renewables and reaping the benefits through Flow Power’s innovative renewable products and intelligent tools to better manage their energy. Together with these customers, we are delivering on our key goal to accelerating the renewable energy transition,” he said.

Asahi Beverages also draws energy from onsite solar panels at their Yatala brewery on the Gold Coast, Australia’s biggest solar project at a brewery. The panels generate enough solar power to brew the equivalent of around 150 million stubbies each year.

The new PPA with Flow Power allows Asahi Beverages to continue to procure renewable energy while reducing purchasing costs and securing a power supply over the longer term.

Image: Byron Serjeantson, COO of Flow Power shakes hands with John Tortora, Group Chief Procurement and Sustainability Officer at Asahi Beverages.

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