Wind Power

New Zealand Farmers Dealing Wind Rights

A group of Makara farmers with land overlooking the western approaches to Cook Strait have formed a company to sell rights to generate electricity from wind power.

MAKARA, New Zealand 2002-03-20 [SolarAccess.com] The six farmers own the land along the 15-kilometer coastal strip between Makara and Titahi Bay and have registered Wind Corp to negotiate with power-generating companies interested in building a wind farm. A spokesman said they envisaged a wind farm costing at least $50 million, with turbine generators at least twice as big as the existing generator on the southern Wellington hills. According to the farmers, the coastal strip had good potential as a wind farm and the new company was talking to major electricity generation companies. The successful company would have access to the farmlands and would put the electricity into the grid for distribution. The group is currently only offering to show perspective developers the land to let them make their own assessments as to the potential. The farmers are confident that with wind power getting cheaper each year and the design of larger wind turbines, the price of power per kilowatt hour will continue to reduce. Some wind data for the area exists, other records kept by the National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research and the previous state electricity department had been handed to generator and retailer Meridan.