Ngawha Marae Komiti and Top Energy sign Ngawha deal
Ngawha Marae Komiti and Top Energy sign Ngawha deal.
Far North lines company and electricity generator Top Energy has signed a co-operation and development agreement with the Ngawha Marae Trustee Komiti which both parties hope will lead to cultural and commercial development at and around the geothermal field near Kaikohe.
Top Energy is applying for consent to expand its geothermal power generation plant at Ngawha. The co-operation and development agreement addresses concerns the Komiti had about the project but also sets the foundations for a long-term relationship between the Parties.
Terms of the agreement are confidential but it recognises that the hapu of Ngati Rangi has kaitiaki responsibilities in the Ngawha area and contains provision for a Komiti representative to attend meetings of the Peer Review Panel which advises the Northland Regional Council on compliance with resource consent conditions.
It also ensures that Top Energy will make information available to the Komiti relating to details of the power station’s geothermal resource use.
Top Energy and the Komiti will also work together to investigate the potential for commercial opportunities at Ngawha on land collectively owned by hapu members.
‘There is a long and successful history of iwi and hapū entities working with power companies to develop resources’ said Chris Webster, advisor to the Komiti.
‘We were stimulated by the co-operative nature of the partnerships between Maori entities and commercial parties in the Central North Island such as the Tuaropaki Trust and the Taupo based milk products business Miraka.’
Top Energy has also agreed to assist with the restoration of historic sites of particular significance to the Komiti.
‘We’re delighted to have forged the basis for a robust, constructive and long-term relationship with the Ngawha Marae Komiti and wish to particularly thank it and their project advisor, Chris Webster, in enabling this agreement to be reached’ said Top Energy chief executive Russell Shaw.