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Mighty River Power Buys NGC Methane Share

28 February 2002

Electricity generator Mighty River Power has bought out Natural Gas Corporation's share in the Hutt Valley Silverstream methane gas power station, increasing its shareholding from 46.5 to 93 per cent, and consolidating its position as the country's largest owner and operator of this type of generation.

The purchase from NGC brings Mighty River Power's market share of landfill methane generating plant to 85 percent. The 3MW Silverstream plant, a partnership with Hutt City Council, is the third largest power station of its type in New Zealand, providing 13 per cent of total generation from this source.

Mighty River Power's generation development manager Mr Stuart Lush says the move demonstrates Mighty River Power's continuing commitment to environmentally responsible generation, including harnessing the methane gas produced as a by-product of landfills.

In partnership with EnviroWaste Services Ltd, the company also owns and operates a 3 MW station at the Rosedale Road landfill site and a 5 MW station at Greenmount, both in Auckland. These are the two largest methane gas generation stations in the country.

Methane conversion at these three plants reduces atmospheric emissions by the equivalent of nearly 400,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide, therefore providing a significant contribution to greenhouse gas reductions.

Mr Stuart Duncan, Hutt City Council's general manager, asset management, says the council is committed to using gas generated through landfill activity in an environmentally acceptable way.

"It not only puts power into the national grid, but delivers considerable savings for us as a Council, because we would otherwise have to flare the gas ourselves. The more substantial involvement of a committed energy company in this partnership is a win-win situation for everyone."

Mighty River Power is committed to developing alternative, renewable energy sources and leading the way in converting waste methane energy at landfill sites to electricity, says Mr Lush.

The plants complement Mighty River Power's hydro electricity production in the Waikato, its geothermal interests at Mokai and Rotokawa in the central North Island, and its 50 per cent interest in the 120MW natural gas fuelled, co-generation station at Southdown in Auckland.


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