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


Renewables growth behind closure of Southdown station

Renewables growth behind closure of Southdown thermal station

Mighty River Power today confirmed that its gas-fired Southdown power station will close at the end of the year in response to significant growth in renewable generation in New Zealand.

Chief Executive Fraser Whineray said the 140MW Southdown station in Auckland had played a very small role in Mighty River Power’s portfolio in past two years, representing just 5% of the Company’s generation, and less than 1% of New Zealand’s total electricity demand. The plant has high running costs compared with large renewable electricity plants, such as hydro and geothermal.

The Southdown station is expected to close on 31 December 2015, and will then be dismantled for sale overseas. The Company has been working closely with Southdown’s 17 employees to explore future opportunities with them.

Major investment in renewable electricity generation in New Zealand over the past decade has “squeezed out large volumes of gas and coal-fired generation out of New Zealand’s electricity mix, because they’re less economic to run,” Mr Whineray said. In total there has been a reduction of more than 4,000GWh of thermal fuel commitments since 2013, representing more than 10% of the total generation in New Zealand. This reflects the renewable advantage of New Zealand – one of the world leaders.

Mighty River Power has invested more than $1.4 billion in reliable base-load geothermal, including the completion of three major geothermal power plants since 2008.

This investment has strengthened and grown the Company’s generation base, with geothermal now making up over 40% of the Company’s portfolio and complementing the Waikato Hydro System – the fastest peaking plant in the North Island – located close to Auckland, the country’s largest demand centre.

“Mighty River Power has demonstrated through prolonged periods of very dry conditions over the past two financial years, when hydro inflows have been at record low levels, the resilience that comes from having two large and complementary renewable fuels to draw from, combined with a liquid hedge market and a strong national grid.”

The Southdown station (excluding land) has a historic cost book value of approximately $50 million and Mighty River Power will confirm any accounting impacts in its normal financial reporting process.


© Scoop Media

Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines


Digitl: Bumper year ahead for NZ IT sector

Gartner says New Zealand spending on technology products and services will grow 7.4 percent this year. The company’s latest forecast says the market will total NZ$15.3 billion in 2022... More>>

Fonterra: Lifts Forecast Farmgate Milk Price Range

Fonterra Co-operative Group today lifted its 2021/22 forecast Farmgate Milk Price range to NZD $8.90 - $9.50 per kgMS, up from NZD $8.40 - $9.00 per kgMS. This increases the midpoint of the range, which farmers are paid off... More>>

Federated Farmers: NAIT Levy Increases Must Achieve Accurate, User-friendly System
Nobody welcomes extra costs but if OSPRI is to catch-up on under investment in the NAIT platform and deliver on its workability and farmer support, levy increases are probably necessary, Federated Farmers says... More>>

Skoltech: Study Probes Earth’s Turbulent Past To Explain Where Oceans Came From

The origin of water on our planet is a hot question: Water has immense implications for plate tectonics, climate, the origin of life on Earth, and potential habitability of other Earth-like planets. In a recent study in Physical Review Letters, a Skoltech professor and his Chinese colleagues suggest... More>>

Statistics: Household Net Worth Grows In The September 2021 Quarter But At A Slower Pace Compared To March 2021

Household net worth grew by $60.7 billion in the September 2021 quarter compared with the June 2021 quarter, Stats NZ said today. This represents an increase of 2.5 percent, a similar result to the June 2021 quarter, which was up $60.6 billion or 2.6 percent... More>>

TradeMe: Job Market Ends 2021 On A High With Record Number Of Vacancies
The New Zealand job market finished 2021 on a high note, with the ball still firmly in the job hunters’ court, according to the analysis of 69,600 vacancies listed on Trade Me Jobs for the quarter ending 31 December (Q4)... More>>