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Meridian withdraws Project Aqua applications

Meridian Energy withdraws Project Aqua consent applications

Meridian Energy has withdrawn its applications for resource consent for its discontinued Project Aqua hydro development on the Lower Waitaki River.

The state-owned power generator and retailer announced it would not continue with the project in March this year, but did not immediately withdraw its resource consent applications or land designations.

Chief Executive Keith Turner says the applications were left in place because of the major investment in them and uncertainty about the content and effect of the Government’s then newly-introduced Waitaki Catchment legislation.

“Until we saw the final shape of that law we didn’t know whether having a ‘live’ application would be important or not. We would have been taking an unnecessary risk if we had withdrawn the consent applications prematurely only to find they were important under the new legislation.”

Project Aqua involved a 60-kilometre canal running along the southern side of the lower Waitaki River with six power stations along its length generating a total of some 540 megawatts (MW) of electricity.


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