Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search


Ophir Comes In From The Cold

17th August 2012

Ophir Comes In From The Cold

Ophir, New Zealand, August 17th, 2012 - Despite rivalry between Ophir and Ranfurly regarding New Zealand’s coldest town, German giant Knauf Insulation chose the Central Otago settlement of Ophir when they decided to insulate the homes of a resilient community.

Knauf is on the cusp of completing a 12 month project to insulate every single home and most commercial buildings in Ophir from the pub to the church, warming up the lives of the 50 residents of the small town and the thousands of rail trail visitors that pass through every year.

“Knauf is a family owned company that prides itself on community values and being a responsible corporate citizen. We believed this was a useful way to demonstrate our commitment to improving energy efficiency in New Zealand and help some very hardy South Islanders become more comfortable in their homes,” said Stuart Dunbar, General Manager of Knauf Insulation AU/NZ.

The historic mining town was full of quaint, old, energy inefficient homes and insulating them all was no small feat. The final house is to be completed in August marking the end of this lengthy project.

In 1995, Ophir, two hours outside of Dunedin, recorded New Zealand’s coldest temperature of -21.5 degrees Celsius. Residents remember livestock freezing to the ground and prising frozen hens from their perches.

“We would have to cart buckets of water to the toilet to be able to flush because all of the pipes were frozen,” recalls Jack Allen, an Ophir local.

Despite a worldwide presence, Knauf is new to New Zealand and recognised the opportunity to assist the community by bringing the coldest town in from the icy South Island temperatures with its high performance EarthWool insulation.

Knauf’s EarthWool insulation is a higher quality product that is safer and more environmentally friendlier than other traditional glasswool products on the market. And, what’s more, it is an energy saving product that has been used in some of the world’s coldest climates in Europe, North America and Russia.

With construction costs in New Zealand on the rise, EarthWool is more cost effective for builders, installers and homeowners. It can be ordered online or installed through Eco Insulation or Right House. For more information visit

Notes to the Editor:
1. EarthWool is a high performance glasswool insulation product and is not a wool based product
2. For more information about the legal case currently in the High Court, please visit
3. Comment from Ophir residents can be organised through Eleven PR
4. To watch a video of the Ophir project visit:

About Knauf Insulation:
Knauf Insulation is part of the Knauf Group of Companies, a family owned global building material business with annual revenue in excess of $US7 billion. As one of the world's leading insulation manufacturers, they are active in more than 50 countries and have over 30 manufacturing sites producing glasswool, rock mineral wool, extruded polystyrene (XPS) expanded polystyrene (EPS), extruded polyethylene (XPE) and reflective foil insulation. With over 5,000 employees, they are global specialists in insulation manufacture, research and development and providers of advanced energy efficiency solutions for buildings for any country and climate.

The Knauf Insulation business arm in New Zealand supplies a wide range of high performance glasswool products (branded Earthwool™) and also reflective foil insulation products. State of the art proprietary technology enables the company to manufacture insulation of the highest quality, which sets new benchmarks in New Zealand for ease of handling, sustainability, health and safety.


© Scoop Media

Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines


Statistics New Zealand: COVID-19 Sees Record 12.2 Percent Fall In New Zealand’s Economy

Gross domestic product (GDP) fell by 12.2 percent in the June 2020 quarter, the largest quarterly fall recorded since the current series began in 1987, as the COVID-19 restrictions in place through the quarter impacted economic activity, Stats NZ said ... More>>


Climate: Scientists Release ‘Blueprint’ To Save Critical Ecosystems And Stabilize The Earth’s Climate

A group of scientists and experts produced the first comprehensive global-scale analysis of terrestrial areas essential for biodiversity and climate resilience, totaling 50.4% of the Earth's land. The report was published in Science Advances ... More>>


MPI: Independent Review Launched Into Assurances For Safe Transport Of Livestock By Sea

The Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) has launched an independent review of the assurances it receives for the safe transport of livestock by sea. MPI Director-General Ray Smith says Mike Heron QC has been appointed to lead the review, which is expected ... More>>


Computers: New Zealand PC Market Grows Nearly 40% Due To Work From Home Demand

COVID-19 had large impacts on demand for PCs as businesses prepared for lockdowns by purchasing notebooks to mobilise their workforce. In the second quarter of 2020, New Zealand's Traditional PC market experienced a 39.7% year-on-year (YoY) growth ... More>>


Mediaworks: Reaches Agreement To Sell TV Operations To Discovery, Inc.

New Zealand’s largest independent commercial broadcaster MediaWorks and the global leader of real-life entertainment Discovery Inc. (“Discovery”) are pleased to announce they have reached a binding agreement regarding the sale of MediaWorks’ ... More>>


Ministry of Health: Public Transport Distancing Requirements Relaxed

Physical distancing requirements on public transport have been reviewed by the Ministry of Health to determine whether they are still required at Alert Level 2 (or below). The Ministry’s assessment is that mandatory face covering and individuals tracking ... More>>


NZHIA: New Zealand Hemp Industry Set To Generate $2 Billion Per Annum And Create 20,000 Jobs

A new report says a fully enabled hemp industry could generate $2 billion in income for New Zealand by 2030, while also creating thousands of new jobs. Written by industry strategist Dr Nick Marsh, the report has prompted calls from the New Zealand Hemp ... More>>


Stats NZ: One In 14 Employed People Report High Risk Of Losing Jobs

About one in 14 workers say they expect to lose their job or business by mid-2021, Stats NZ said today. A survey of employed people in the June 2020 quarter showed 7 percent felt there was a high or almost certain chance of losing their job or business ... More>>

ASB Quarterly Economic Forecast: NZ Economy Doing Better Than Expected, But Challenges Remain

August lockdown estimated to have shaved 8% off NZ’s weekly GDP, and 0.5% off annual GDP Economy now expected to shrink 5% (year-on-year) by end of 2020 Unemployment rate now expected to peak at 7.2% The latest ASB Quarterly Economic Forecast is less ... More>>


SAFE: Live Export Ship Carrying 5,800 New Zealand Cows Goes Missing In East China Sea

Livestock carrier Gulf Livestock 1 sent a distress signal at 4:45am NZT yesterday in the East China Sea. The area is affected by Typhoon Maysak. At 4pm a patrol plane spotted a lifeboat - with no people in it - and a man in lifejacket nearby. The ship ... More>>


FMA: Kiwisaver Fees Don't Match Performance

The Financial Markets Authority (FMA) today published an independent report into the passive and active investment management styles [i] used by KiwiSaver providers. The FMA commissioned MyFiduciary to test the extent that KiwiSaver providers were ... More>>