Welcome to our 2019 Sustainability Report

Find out how we're working to get energy right for our customers, communities and planet.

Frank reporting 2018 cropped

A message from Frank

I am pleased to present Origin’s 2019 Sustainability Report.

It has been more than a year since we launched our new purpose. Since then, we have spent a lot of time reflecting on how we can best live up to the promise of Good Energy, including how we deliver it to our customers, and the communities we serve and ultimately how we impact the planet we live on. Every day our purpose sets us new challenges and new opportunities.

Putting the customer first

The four million customers we serve are at the heart of our business and we are continually looking for ways to deliver a better experience to them.

This includes making it easier and simpler for our customers to use energy more efficiently. This year we gave a trial group an opportunity to participate in demand management, where we turned their thermostats up two degrees for two hours on hot days to ease pressure on the grid. More than 60 per cent of the trial customers opted in, which makes us optimistic that we can encourage more customers to come onboard, when we make it easy to do so, and clearly demonstrate the benefits.

Affordability is unquestionably one of the most pressing issues for our customers. We recently went beyond what was required of us with the introduction of the Commonwealth Government’s default market offer on 1 July 2019 by extending the regulated price to our customers on non-discounted plans with a flat tariff. This means more than 520,000 residential and small business customers are now paying less for their electricity. Just as importantly, we have protected our hardship customers from the impact of price rises since 2016.

A cleaner, smarter energy future

Origin recognises we have an important contribution to make in helping Australia meet its emissions reduction targets through the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change’s Paris Agreement. We have a five-pillar approach to progressively decarbonise our business.

As part of this strategy, we remain committed to exiting coal-fired generation by 2032. We are also on track to have more than 25 per cent of our owned and contracted generation capacity to come from renewables and storage by 2020, all the while using our strong gas portfolio as a lower-emissions firming fuel.

We have now resumed exploration in the Beetaloo Basin after the independent Scientific Inquiry into Hydraulic Fracturing in the Northern Territory handed down its recommendations in 2018 to ensure the Territory can support a safe and viable onshore gas industry. We firmly believe that gas development has the potential to transform the Northern Territory through jobs, infrastructure and skills while supporting a cleaner energy future.

Russell Jeffery, who is on the cover of this report, is our regional relationship specialist based in the Northern Territory. As we resume our exploration in the Beetaloo Basin, Russell has played a pivotal role in strengthening relationships with our host Traditional Owners and Native Title holders. It’s important to note that any future developments in the Beetaloo Basin will only be undertaken by Origin following negotiation of a Production Agreement with the relevant host Traditional Owners and Native Title holders.

Giving back to the community

This year also marked an important step on the journey to reconciliation for Origin with the launch of our Stretch Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP). Our Stretch RAP includes commitments to double the number of Indigenous employees at Origin by 2022, actively supporting Indigenous businesses through procurement and helping to fund better educational outcomes through the Origin Foundation.

This coming year we will celebrate 10 years of the Origin Foundation, our philanthropic foundation, which has provided over $25 million to support communities since inception. Over the past decade, the Origin Foundation has helped more than 25,000 students around the country discover their potential through the power of education. The Origin Foundation’s Give Time program has seen more than 1,400 of our people volunteer their time in the last year, including activities like cooking breakfast for vendors of the Big Issue and assembling Solar Buddy lights that help children living in Papua New Guinea overcome energy poverty. I am especially proud that the Origin Foundation was recently awarded first place by GoodCompany in its Top 40 Workplaces to Give Back survey.

The people who make up Origin

The promise of Good Energy goes beyond our customers and stakeholders. It’s important that the more than 5,300 people who come to work with us every day see this commitment in action. We are striving to create a diverse, inclusive and fulfilling workplace – one that attracts the very best people to come and work with us.

To that end, we have introduced one of the most generous parental leave schemes in the Australian energy industry, increasing paid parental leave from 13 weeks to 20, paid secondary carer’s leave from two weeks to four and eliminating qualifying periods, which means that expecting a child is no barrier to anyone starting a great new career at Origin.

Disappointingly, after recording our lowest ever Total Recordable Injury Frequency Rate last year, we saw a rise this year from 2.2 to 4.5. This is unacceptable, and we introduced a number of significant safety programs and interventions to address this critical issue. The safety of our people is paramount, and the efforts of the entire leadership team at Origin are focused on making sure our people return home to their families safely every day.

I hope this – our 18th Sustainability Report – gives you a sense of how we are performing as a company to deliver for our customers, communities and planet.

Frank Calabria
Chief Executive Officer

 


Our management approach 

These reports provide detail on the sustainability status of key management areas. They cover our approach and our policies. 

Materiality

In every Annual Report, we identify risks in our Operating and Financial Review. These determine the sustainability topics we report on.

Our materiality analysis is where we examine each sustainability aspect according to:

  • its level of risk to the company
  • the level of stakeholder interest
  • the topicality of each aspect.

We use the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) and the AA1000 AccountAbility Principles to inform our reporting.

View our Global Reporting Initiative supplement (132KB)