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DRAFT COPY ONLY - THESIS BLURB

Future Christchurch: A Green Economy


I believe out of crisis arises opportunity and in the post-earthquake landscape there is the possibility to transition Christchurch to become a leading sustainable economy. My thesis aims to show how Christchurch could take advantage of the rebuild to become a Zero-Carbon city by 2030. It is Architecture that acts as an economic catalyst for this transition. I agree with Einstein when he said, "we can't solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them." In order to address the current global economic and environmental crisis, we need a completely new tactic, one that no longer relies on outdated modes of thinking and instead adopts innovative and creative solutions to pressing environmental challenges. Often master plans for cities are shortsighted due to the fact that they cant adapt to change. The result is that when the plans are realized; they immediately become outdated due to unanticipated and inevitable innovations of technology. Christchurch is at a cross road, it can either take the path of a Green Economy which would be ecologically and economically responsible, or continue down the Business as Usual road, which neglects to account for larger long term consequences for the gain of smaller immediate returns. The value of the ecological system has to be calculated into the equation; this brings to question the value of nature and the nature of value. Simply said, just because something is free does not mean it does not have value; for instances there is no value placed on clean drinking water or clean air until it is at risk. But when natural disasters such as landslides and droughts occur, the economic cost to societies is brought to attention, which in effect is the price we pay for neglecting the value of the ecological systems we live in. If Christchurch chooses to take the path towards the Green Economy and focus on investing in renewable energy, it could become a leading prototype city for the rest of the world to follow. The Zero Carbon Christchurch 2030 Energy Plan outlines a technically possible, realistic and economically attractive transition towards using only 100% of renewable energy to power Christchurch in 15 years. The plan is the outcome of my previous research to use an injection of a green energy wave as a catalyst for economic growth and recovery after the earthquakes. My thesis also demonstrates the vast economic savings as a result of this transition towards being Zero-Carbon; which when compared to the, Business as Usual; oil dependent scenario has a cumulative savings of $6.5 Billion by the year 2040. Further, Christchurch would build on New Zealands identity as a clean green country to capture the attention of foreign investors looking to invest in sustainable technologies. Christchurch is currently in a pivotal state of change, which is the perfect opportunity to test revolutionary ideas on an urban scale. In my thesis I am proposing a test case and will design an energy hub in the West of Christchurch, along the industrial line in Sockburn. This energy hub would be the first prototype in which the notions of sustainable technologies and concepts are developed, manufactured, created and taught to the people of Christchurch and later the rest of the world. I believe once people start to actually see and experience the positive changes that are being developed within this green precinct; the idea for a more sustainable future will spread like a bug, the Green bug.

Zhi Jian (David) Wong / zwon005@aucklanduni.ac.nz / 021 115 7897

Zhi Jian (David) Wong University of Auckland


MArch (Professional) Thesis Future Christchurch: A Green Economy futurechristchurch.wordpress.com

REBUILD
HYDRO
Hydro power supplies back-up base load energy when the wind and solar energies do not meet the demand. Since the majority of the energy demand can be met by other renewable energy sources, this means the strain on the stored energy at the hydro dams can be reduced.

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ENERGY EFFICIENCY
Energy efficiency plays a vital part, even though energy is generated from renewable sources, wasting energy is unsustainable. Architecture plays an important role to ensure energy efficient methods of construction are implemented and because Christchurch will undergoing a massive reconstruction; there is the opportunity to upgrade existing buildings to be as energy efficient as possible.

BIOMASS
Biomass supplies peak heating energy demands to the CBD and other satellite hubs during the winter months which typically require more energy. Biomass is a good source of heat generated from waste; which has the additional benefit of reducing waste by-products instead of putting them into landfills. Two possible examples of sources for biomass heating come from timber waste generated in the forest and construction industry, and from harmful polluting gases (Methane) in the landfills.

WIND
Wind energy supplies intermittent base energy demands. Wind energy could be used in Christchurch by forging an alliance with the energy companies and persuading them to invest within Canterbury into wind technologies. There is sufficient wind to make the investment economically viable, and instead of relying on coal as a source of energy, wind power could be harnessed instead. If the government invested in renewable energies such as wind, as opposed to oil explorations; it would be investing in a long term energy strategy rather than a short term fix. The added benefit could help spark an economy around the demand for renewable technologies, which is a high-value product.

SOLAR
Solar energy would provide the peak base load energy during the day and would provide excess energy in times of good solar collection; which would be fed back to the smart grid system. Solar Photovoltaic (PV) panels could be implemented where repairs for damaged buildings need to be done, as well as in any new construction. In times of crisis, solar energy in conjunction with electric vehicles becomes the solution for providing the city with emergency back-up power. The way to encourage solar adoption is to have different solar feed-in tariffs rewarding the early adopters with a fixed tariff which would help to gain momentum for a move towards solar energy adoption in Christchurch.

P HASE
1

RESILIENT ENERGY GENERATION


SUN PV PANEL SYSTEM SMART GRID

1. Solar Photovoltaic (PV) panel generate power from the sun. 2. Electric vehicles are used as a portable battery pack charged by PV panels. 3. The car battery can be used to run home appliances if and when needed. 4. When the PV panels are unable to supply the energy needed the Smart grid is available for back-up. In times when excess energy is generated, the electricity can be sold back to the Smart Grid system.

2 3

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AND RI

AS

IL ST OF O = CO Y 11 ONL FOR 20
SIN

N MILLIOG EVERY YEAR 530


COMPARISON OF ENERGY PRICES IN NEW ZEALAND
GLOBAL WIND GLOBAL SOLAR ELECTRICITY (Retail) PETROL (Retail) SOLAR (Hot Water) SOLAR (Electricity) DIESEL (Retail) OIL BIO-MASS (Electricity) WIND GAS COAL

This is a current comparison of energy sources in New Zealand (NZ) where the true cost of each type of energy production can be compared to each other. In order to compare renewable energy with fossil fuels, the total energy produced over the life span of that form of energy as well as the total cost for production is calculated. From this chart we can see that fossil fuels are not as cost efficient as the market makes them out to be. But what is interesting is that when we look at the price of electricity from the local power companies, we can see that it is high enough to make solar energy an economically viable option; even though New Zealands solar technology is FOUR times less efficient than global standards. The reason for this price differential is because the solar adoption rate in NZ is only 2%, this is staggering when compared to Australia (50%) which has the same solar potential as NZ. The demand for solar energy in NZ is not present in the economy because there is no driver for this to happen, but with this Zero-Carbon energy plan the necessary demand for solar investment could happen.

59%

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FOREIGN INVESTMENT INTO INNOVATIVE RENEWABLE TECHNOLOGY

BIO-MASS (DES Fuel Only) BIO-MASS (Heat) HYDRO 0.00 0.05 0.10 0.15 $ Price / kWh 0.20 0.25 0.30

To create a diverse supply of efficient sources of energy, solar, wind, biomass and hydro energy were chosen based on their long term economic return relative to the energy generated. There are also ecological benefits of using clean energy technology as opposed to fossil fuels, which also have an economic benefit for the well being of the city. The 'Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity' is the concept of calculating the hidden economic value of nature, the rationale behind this is that we assume that if something is free, it does not have value, and because mother nature provides us with clean air and water for free, we take this for granted. An example of this is the significant air pollution in Christchurch, which stems from inefficient log burners and transportation exhaust. The economic health costs to the city is $168 MILLION every year. The Zero-Carbon concept is about working together with nature rather than against it; which makes economic sense and also creates for a healthier environment to live in.

+ $200

120,000 HOMES RETROFITTED

COMPARISON OF THE DIFFERENT SCENARIOS


60,000 50,000 40,000 30,000 20,000 10,000 0 2012 (BAU) 2012 (ZCCEP) 2030 (BAU) 2030 (ZCCEP)

Percentage of being Zero - Carbon

Energy Efficiency Transport Shift Wind Solar Biomass Hydro Fossil Fuels
BAU - BUSINESS AS USUAL (OIL ECONOMY) ZCCEP - ZERO CARBON CHRISTCHURCH ENERGY PLAN

Energy Use (TJ/pa)

100%

OIL

SAVED EVERY YEAR FROM NOT IMPORTING OIL

$820 MILLION

2030

The economic value savings/cost for each person every year in Christchurch when compared to the Business as Usual Oil Scenario

+ $ 606

$ $ $ $

CHRISTCHURCH CHOICE

$
$6.5 BILLION

$
OIL

2040 RISK
CLEAN GREEN NZ BRAND

INVESTMENT

CHRISTCHURCH
A Sustainable Energy Strategy for Economic Growth and Stability

ZERO - CARBON

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PH PH

E2

TRANSPORTATION SHIFT TO ELECTRIC VEHICLES


There are two aims. Firstly, to change the behaviour of using cars in the city in order to reduce the total number of kilometres driven. This can be accomplished in several ways: via a car sharing mobile application (KiwiGo), improved public transportation, and urban planning measures that allow for housing to be closer to areas of work. Secondly, through a shift towards using electric vehicles (EV) that can be charged at home. The transition towards using EVs can be done by providing incentives and the necessary infrastructure (battery swap centres). Collaboration with the Better Place organization that is leading this global transition to an EV network system would be beneficial. Having an EV network within the city would provide Christchurch with a significant amount of stored energy.

- IM

COMPARISON OF ENERGY SOURCES

PLE ME NT AT ION

235 WIND TURBINES BUILT

ELECTRIC VEHICLES ARE 5 TIMES MORE EFFICIENT THAN FOSSIL FUEL CARS
IS 10 PL CH TR INT IL TO ANN INA O LIO IN ING CL N VE EA YU ST N TE AN $$ CH

5X
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PH AS

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3-

- DEVELOPMENT SE 4 PHA

O UTC OM E

$20 BILLION

2030

References and resources can be found in the final thesis publication *