New Zealand Considers New Wellington Area Wind Farm

[] Greater Wellington, New Zealand’s capital city, begins a community consultation process this week on a possible wind farm development at Puketiro, an area to the east of Battle Hill Forest Park. The consultation process follows completion of two feasibility studies of wind energy generation developments on land owned or managed by the Council – Puketiro, Mt Climie and Belmont Regional Park. The first two studies have been completed, and analysis of the larger Belmont site is still underway. Chris Laidlaw Chair of Greater Wellington’s Landcare Committee said that although the Mt Climie ridge has outstanding wind energy potential, there are evident risks to parts of the local ecology and for that reason they are erring on the side of caution and will be not be proceeding any further with that site at this stage. Instead, they have identified Puketiro as the ideal place to start. Greater Wellington’s renewable energy project manager Murray Kennedy says that a wind farm development at Puketiro could provide the region with at least 26MW of energy, enough to power about 13,000 homes.
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