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Meridian Announces Energy Savings Makeover Winners

Media Release
For immediate release
9 June 2003

Meridian Energy announces Energy Savings Makeover winners

Meridian Energy announced today the winners of its Energy Savings Makeover, one of Meridian’s several initiatives to encourage people to save energy and reach Target 10%.

Five residential and five business customers won an energy savings makeover for their home or business.

“Each customer has won an energy assessment and energy upgrades up to a value of $1,000 for residential customers and up to $2,500 for business customers,” said Meridian Energy spokesman Alan Seay.

“The energy savings makeovers give practical steps homeowners and businesses can take to reduce energy consumption and save. We’ll be working with each customer to assess their power usage and install energy savings products that make a difference to their energy use,” he said.

The makeovers are being organised by the energy efficiency company EnergySmart. Managing Director Robyn McKeown said: “Simple changes can make a real difference to people’s energy consumption. We assessed Christchurch winner City Centre Motel and found heat was escaping from the hot water cylinders as well as draughts coming in under doors.

“Owner Robyn Matheson decided to get the 16 hot water cylinders wrapped and lagged and draught excluders on 16 doors installed, with potential savings of 7,706 kilowatt hours a year. With the other recommendations from the makeover, the motel could potentially save a total of up to 30,000 kilowatt hours a year. These additional measures include installing compact fluorescent bulbs in living and bedroom areas where lights are on for four or more hours a day, and turning off heated towel rails, television sets and fridges at the wall when rooms are vacant.

Dannevirke winners Colin and Claire Beale had an energy check of their home which identified several effective ways to save power. “The Beales’ home had very good ceiling insulation and the hot water temperature at the tap was an acceptable 55 degrees Celsius. We installed ten energy saving light bulbs, a hot water cylinder wrap and pipe lagging. The makeover team also replaced the seals on the fridge and new thermal-lined curtains will arrive soon. The potential savings from these changes are an estimated 1,776 kilowatt hours a year,” said Ms McKeown.

Alan Seay said that everyone can undertake simple energy audits of their home or business and identify ways to save energy. “It’s easy to make energy savings through simple installations like draught excluders and hot water cylinder wraps or fixing a leaky tap. By following the tips in Meridian’s energy savings brochures, people can make energy savings while keeping warm and healthy.” In a separate initiative, Meridian, in association with Community Energy Action in Christchurch and EnergySmart, will provide 1,500 low-income Christchurch households with free energy savings products.

“Meridian Energy Saver Vans will visit households identified by Community Energy Action and, where necessary, install cylinder wraps, energy savings lights, draught excluders and water savings showerheads. We’ve taken this step to help our customers in greatest need save energy and keep safe and warm over winter,” said Mr Seay.

The energy savings makeovers and energy saver vans are just two Meridian Energy initiatives supporting Target 10%. Other initiatives include energy savings brochures for residential, business and corporate customers and energy saving product offers.

Meridian Energy recently announced its comprehensive rewards scheme which will see Plunket receive $1million if the nation reaches the 10% savings target (based on the cumulative national savings figure as measured by the Winter Power Taskforce from 1 June-31 August 2003).


Meridian Energy at a glance
Meridian Energy is the largest of the three state-owned enterprises formed from the split of ECNZ on March 31 1999.

With a total New Zealand capacity of 2438 MW, it has some 30 percent of the country’s total electricity generation.

In addition to the eight hydro power stations based on the Waitaki River system, Meridian Energy owns and operates New Zealand’s largest hydro station at Manapouri, and the Wellington wind turbine.

The company supplies energy to the country’s single biggest electricity customer, the Comalco aluminium smelter at Bluff, while at the other end of the customer scale it serves householders and businesses nationwide from a purposebuilt retail operations centre in downtown Christchurch.

Meridian Energy has interests in South Island hydro development opportunities, research and development investments in superconductor and fuel cell technologies and wind generation opportunities.

It employs about 200 people at offices in Christchurch, Wellington, Twizel and Sydney.

Generating Assets •
Waitaki River system
The Upper Waitaki system begins at Lake Tekapo, a storage lake with about 800 GWh of storage capacity, which represents about 22 percent of the country’s hydro storage.

Water passes through the Tekapo A power station and is diverted by a purpose-built hydro canal to Tekapo B station on the shores of Lake Pukaki.

Lake Pukaki has some 1600 GWh of storage capacity – about 44 percent of New Zealand’s total. Water is drawn by canal from both Lakes Pukaki and Ohau to supply Ohau A , B and C power stations, before being discharged into Lake Benmore.

After passing through the Benmore power station, the water flows down the Waitaki River through the Aviemore and Waitaki stations.

Manapouri/Te Anau system
The combined storage of Lakes Te Anau and Manapouri is 380 GWh. The Manapouri power station lies 178m underground on the western shore of Lake Manapouri, and is accessed via a 2km road tunnel.

After passing through the station the water flows into Doubtful Sound via two 10km-long tailrace tunnels.

All of the stations are designed to be remote controlled from a control centre at Twizel.

Meridian Energy Australia Ltd owns the Southern Hydro power stations in Victoria.

The ten stations have a total generating capacity of 540MW, with about 940 GWh of output.

The company also owns hydro generation facilities at five small dams in New South Wales and Victoria, generating a total of 62 MW.

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