Genesis rolls out new wind farm plans

Genesis Power says the first stage of its next wind farm - a 25MW project on the west coast south of Auckland - could be operational by early 2005.
Genesis rolls out new wind farm plans Genesis rolls out new wind farm plans Genesis rolls out new wind farm plans Genesis rolls out new wind farm plans Genesis rolls out new wind farm plans

Auckland-headquartered Genesis yesterday said that a year of research had shown the west coast Awhitu Peninsula, extending from the Manukau Heads to the Waikato River, to be a reliable source of wind power.

Company chief executive Murray Jackson said the first site, located near Waiuku and the BHP Steel Mill, could support up to 25MW of generation, which would generate enough electricity for 12,000 houses. Easy access to the site would encourage manufacturers to offer larger generators than previously presented, up to 1500kW in output.

"Proximity to the Auckland load and the consistent coastal winds make the Awhitu Peninsula a great choice for wind development. Genesis is very aware of the environmental impacts and has commissioned reports outlining visual, noise and traffic assessments."

Genesis had reached agreement with the local land owners to use this land for the planned wind farm and would lodge a resource consent application with the Franklin District Council next month. Once consents were granted, Genesis would go out to tender for the generators in early 2004, with the turbines operational in early 2005.

The tender documents would also specify any environmental constraints placed on Genesis as a result of the resource consents process.

Jackson said Genesis was working with Counties Power to connect the wind farm into the existing 33kV lines network and any necessary line upgrades.

Genesis already owns the Hau Nui wind farm at Martinborough and last year had planned an expansion there, although it and Powerco have yet to agree to any network connection for that Wairarapa site.

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