The Te Ahi O Maui partnership and an Israeli company, Ormat, signed a deal last week for the construction of a new geothermal power plant near Kawerau, New Zealand.

The Te Ahi O Maui geothermal project is a partnership between Eastland Generation and the Kawerau A8D Ahu Whenua Trust, who are owners of the land on which the plant will be constructed.

Ormat is a world-leader in the development and construction of state of the art and environmentally sound geothermal power solutions. Listed on the New York Stock Exchange and employing over 1,000 people worldwide, Ormat has supplied geothermal power to over 23 countries.

Matt Todd, Chairman of the Te Ahi O Maui board and Chief Executive of Eastland Group, says he is pleased the project has partnered with Ormat for construction of the power plant. “Ormat has over 30 years’ experience in the New Zealand geothermal energy industry and is involved in 12 geothermal projects around the country. They have the necessary skills and knowledge that we can rely on for the successful delivery of the Te Ahi Ō Maui project.”

Trustee for the Kawerau A8D Ahu Whenua Trust and Cultural Advisor to the project, Tomairangi Fox, said this milestone is very significant for his people. As kaitiaki of the land, the Kawerau A8D Trust members work closely with the project managers to ensure the mauri, or life force, of the land and its people is protected and enhanced.  “We’ve seen the other Ormat plants here in Kawerau and further afield.  We liked what we saw and this company’s operations and plants fit with our kaupapa,” said Mr Fox.

Colleen Skerrett-White, owner and past-trustee of the A8D Trust, and assistant to the project team, said, “We have measures in place so that Te Ahi O Maui will have minimal impact on the surrounding environment and its people. For example, our standards for environmental care go over and above Regional Council consent conditions. Our project team has worked really hard to ensure the project is executed in an environmentally friendly, sustainable and culturally appropriate way; Ormat will help us achieve this.”

Te Ahi O Maui holds resource consent for the take and discharge of 15,000 tonnes per day of geothermal fluid from the Kawerau geothermal reservoir. Te Ahi O Maui Project Manager, Ben Gibson, says that Ormat’s technology is well suited to the Kawerau field. “We believe that this new plant should deliver in excess of 22 megawatts (MW) of electricity.”

Mr Gibson advised that although exact timing depends on a successful drilling campaign, he expects construction of the power plant will start towards the end of this year with completion likely in 2018.

ENDS

Ormat signing

CAPTION:

The Te Ahi O Maui partnership and an Israeli company, Ormat, signed a deal last week for the construction of a new geothermal power plant near Kawerau. Pictured are:
Back row L to R: Lau Lasike (Partner, Kusabs Lasike), Nick Webb (Finance and Treasury Manager, Eastland Group), Andrew Kusabs (Chairman, Kawerau A8D Trust), Ben Gibson (Project Manager, TAOM), Hilel Legmann (Marketing Manager, Ormat), Gavin Murphy (GM Business Development, Eastland Group), Bruce Cole (NZ Representative, Ormat), Colleen Skerrett-White (Project Assistant, TAOM), Stuart McDonnell (Commercial Manager, TAOM)
Front row L to R: Tomairangi Fox (Cultural Advisor, TAOM & Trustee, Kawerau A8D), Matt Todd (Chairman, TAOM & Chief Executive, Eastland Group)

CONTACT FOR FURTHER INFORMATION:

  • Sarah van der Boom   027 646 7529
  • Kathy McVey               021 862 177

ADDITIONAL FACTS:

  • The Te Ahi O Maui geothermal project is a partnership between Eastland Generation and Kawerau A8D Ahu Whenua Trust. Eastland Generation is an Eastland Group business, and Gisborne-based Eastland Group is wholly owned by the Eastland Community Trust, a community trust similar to the Eastern Bay Energy Trust. The Kawerau A8D Ahu Whenua Trust is the owner of the land over the Kawerau geothermal reservoir upon which the project is situated.Te Ahi O Maui project is part of Eastland Group’s strategy to develop a portfolio of renewable electricity generation and minimise the environmental impacts of its projects.
  • Eastland Generation already owns and operates a geothermal plant on the Kawerau field; the GDL plant generates 9MW of clean and renewable, baseload electricity. www.eastland.nz
  • The Te Ahi O Maui geothermal power plant will generate at least 22MW net of electricity from a site 2.3 kilometres north- east of the Kawerau township – enough new power for 22,000 homes.