Local Effort Opens New Zealand Wind Energy Farm

The opening of New Zealand’s newest wind farm, Te Rere Hau in Palmerston North, by NZ Windfarms, Ltd., was accomplished using locally designed and built technology, and is being operated by a company local to New Zealand (NZ). This is significant to the maturing of the local wind energy industry, said the NZ Wind Energy Association.

“The Te Rere Hau wind farm shows that the local wind energy industry has come of age,” said Fraser Clark, newly appointed Chief Executive to the NZ Wind Energy Association. “The industry has now reached a vital level of skills and capability. This is critical if wind energy is to reach the target of providing 20% of the nation’s electricity needs.” Clark said with the start of Te Rere Hau and two other major wind projects under construction, the generation capacity of the New Zealand wind energy sector was about to double from the current capacity of 168 megawatts (MW) to 383 MW. “Wind energy projects are clearly very viable propositions, despite the falling value of the New Zealand dollar and rising fuel and transport costs that are affecting projects across the electricity sector,” Clark said. He said the industry had a stream of projects coming online over the next few years, including Te Rere Hau (52 MW), Meridian Energy’s White Hill in Southland (70 MW) and Stage 3 of TrustPower’s Tararua Windfarm (93 MW).
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