Greening your business

BapistCare slashes its carbon footprint by 70% with one deal

Learn about the aged care provider’s 100% renewable electricity power purchase agreement.

2 young men standing on a lawn outside a BapistCare aged care facility
Byron Serjeantson, Flow Power, and Thomas Griffiths, BaptistCare NSW and ACT, onsite at BaptistCare Shalom Aged Care Home.

BaptistCare is a leading not-for-profit provider of aged care and community services across NSW, ACT and WA, with multiple sites across Sydney, including Woolloomooloo.

It has a roadmap to become net zero by 2050, if not before.

In 2023 BaptistCare participated in our renewable electricity masterclasses.

It was one of the first participants to make the switch to renewable electricity by signing a renewable power purchase agreement (PPA).

By switching BaptistCare will save around 11,000 tonnes of carbon each year.

This is equivalent to removing 25,000 petrol-powered cars from the roads over 10 years.

BaptistCare's experience shows how organisations can develop knowledge, take action and share lessons.

We spoke to Heather Chai, BapistCare’s former sustainability manager, and Thomas Griffiths, head of strategy and investments, about how and why the organisation chose to get a PPA. You might find what they have to say useful.

Snapshot of BapistCare’s PPA deal

  • The PPA covers 15,000 MWh of renewable energy a year from NSW solar and wind farms from 2025. Enough energy to power around 1,400 homes.
  • It’s a 10-year agreement with energy retailer Flow Power. This gives more price certainty than a typical contract.
  • It means BaptistCare will reduce the carbon footprint of its NSW and ACT operations by 70% (from a 2022 baseline of scope 1 and 2 emissions).

How long did it take from initial idea to signing a renewable PPA?

It took close to 12 months, from identifying a PPA as potentially a great way to reduce our emissions, to concluding the negotiations.

During this time, we worked with a consultant to take a deep dive into our energy needs, develop a strong business case and go to tender. It was a busy time.

What advice would you give others?

  • Connect with other businesses and learn from industry peers.

We attended workshops by the City of Sydney and the Business Renewables Centre Australia. These were a great way to build our knowledge, strengthen our business case and hear from other companies that were further along the journey.

  • Start the process early.

It can take time to do the research, build your business case and then get the support for it. Give yourself the time to do this and understand the time frames of your existing energy contracts.

What were the biggest hurdles in securing GreenPower and how did you overcome them?

One of the hurdles can be a preconceived idea about price. People often think that GreenPower will be significantly more expensive than traditional power sources. This is not necessarily the case.

We dedicated time to educate stakeholders and decision-makers on the range of benefits a PPA offers, including the benefit of long-term price certainty.

We invest in communities for the long term. This allowed us to sign a 10-year deal, which meant we could get better pricing and certainty in today’s fluid energy market.

“It’s a way to ensure BaptistCare is a part of the just transition. We care for some of the most vulnerable people in our communities, and this PPA, paired with other initiatives, is one part of our commitment to caring for people, planet and the community.

“We are proud to help lead the aged care and community sector towards a just transition to renewable energy,” Thomas Griffiths said.

What would you do differently?

Do it sooner!

The sooner you get started, the sooner you can be realising both the financial and the environmental benefits for your business.

Were there any unexpected benefits of switching?

  • Better energy pricing
  • Long-term price certainty and the opportunity to form a long-term partnership with our renewable energy provider

Also, many employees were excited to learn about the organisation’s commitment to going renewable. This shows the growing importance employees place on working for an organisation that takes sustainability seriously.

Got questions?

Here's a handy guide to renewable PPAs.

If video content is more your thing, here are 2 popular webinars we conducted with the Business Renewables Centre Australia.

  1. PPA - how to build a business case
  2. PPA - procurement process

If you’d like to know more about purchasing renewable electricity, we’d love to help you.


Published 12 May 2024, updated 13 May 2024

More on Net zero