The an­swer is blow­ing in the wind?

Element - - Business -

Ge­n­e­sis En­ergy cur­rently pro­duces al­most a third of its elec­tric­ity us­ing re­new­able sources. Th­ese in­clude the Hau Nui wind farm in the Wairarapa and the Waikare­moana, Ton­gariro and Tekapo hy­dro­elec­tric schemes. And in Novem­ber last year it em­barked on what must be its most am­bi­tious re­new­able en­ergy project yet: the Cas­tle Hill Wind Farm on ru­ral land in north­ern Wairarapa. The ini­tial sur­vey area cov­ered 30,000 hectares, honed down to a to­tal site foot­print of 2,000 hectares. This will host up to 286 wind tur­bines with a po­ten­tial nom­i­nal ca­pac­ity of up to 860 megawatts of re­new­able elec­tric­ity gen­er­a­tion. The elec­tric­ity pro­duced is po­ten­tially equiv­a­lent to that con­sumed each year by up to 370,000 av­er­age New Zealand house­holds. Con­sent was granted on 11 June, and Ge­n­e­sis En­ergy is now look­ing at the best way to pro­ceed. But whether they be­gin work in a few months or a few years, for­ward plan­ning like this is a vi­tal part of cre­at­ing fu­ture re­new­able en­ergy gen­er­at­ing ca­pac­ity for the coun­try.

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