The City of Sydney has called for tenders to install a network of trigeneration plants to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and energy costs for city buildings and consumers.

The tender, which closes on January 28, 2011, is to supply trigeneration to the 200 City-owned buildings including five aquatic centres, the Town Hall precinct and Customs House.

The tender also allows for the establishment of a private or public/private energy services company to supply City owned buildings as well as non-City owned buildings. It follows a call for expressions of interest which attracted major national and international energy players.

This first phase of the project could see the installation of up to 25 megawatts of trigeneration capacity by 2015, with approximately 20 megawatts being added each year for the next 15 years to a total of at least 330 MW. The programme could be accelerated into precinct based trigeneration systems depending on the level of interest received from non-City building owners.

Trigeneration plants, typically the size of a shipping container, use natural or renewable gases to produce low carbon electricity. They capture waste heat from electricity generation and use it locally for the heating and cooling of buildings. They are nearly three times more energy efficient than a coal-fired power station.