A proposed 40-turbine wind farm on a ridge behind Mt
Maungatua above the Taieri Plain has been increased in size
by 25% into a $50 million project which would produce enough
power for 11,250 homes.
In March last year, Windpower Maungatua Ltd announced its
proposal to build a 40-turbine, 20MW wind farm on a second
ridge well back from the Mt Maungatua face which overlooks
the plain, with power output for about 9000 households.
However, Windpower Maungatua director Dave Tucker said
yesterday a second ridge, a few hundred metres below the
present site but on the same farm block, had been identified
and a further 10 turbines could be sited there.
It could produce a total 25MW of power from 50 turbines, he
The company was still consulting with affected parties but
hoped to make a publicly notified resource consent
application soon, with a hearing date "ideally" set before
the end of the year, he said.
Listed NZ Windfarms, whose other interests include
development of an $80 million 97-turbine development in the
North Island, this April increased its 16.7% stake in
Windpower Maungatua to 50% for an undisclosed sum, buoyed by
promising feasibility results.
A bladeless 50m mast had recently been installed at the
Maungatua site to collect more wind data.
NZ Windfarms chief executive Chris Freear has been in Dunedin
at the Windpower Maungatua information stand at the New
Zealand International Science Festival which ended on Sunday.
Yesterday, he said about 90% of the work on the proposed
project would be sought from New Zealand interests, including
the turbines built by Windflow Technology Ltd, of
He said two projects - the North Island and Maungatua
projects - would be financed by NZ Windpower, which raised
$75 million when it listed.
Earlier this month, NZ Windfarms placed a 30m-high monitoring
mast on a Mt Stuart farm in South Otago, 16km northwest of
Milton, to gather more data to support its plans for a
10-turbine wind farm, with pre-mast wind-testing described as
Mr Freear said similar consultation was just beginning in the
area and any proposal on Mt Stuart was likely to be several
months behind the Maungatua project.
Other parts of the South Island were being scouted as
potential locations, but he declined to reveal where.