April/May 2016 News

Community wind was promi2016 04 14 17.15.40nent in discussions at the New Zealand Wind Energy Association conference in Wellington. Market scenario mapping also demonstrated that continued small wind generation projects like Flat Hill wind farm in Bluff and the proposed Blueskin Wind Development here in Blueskin Bay are a very good fit in the current market, and are curtailing electricity from fossil fuel generation, therefore reducing emissions.

We are very pleased to have received the Section 42A Report (this is  the report by the DCC planner on our Resource Consent application). Our team are currently reviewing the report and considering the matters raised by it. Obviously we are pleased by the overall supportive recommendation. But the report has identified some issues for us to consider, which we will do. The hearing for our Resource Consent application will be on the 17th, 18th and possibly 19th of May.

While in Wellington I got to visit the  newly installed Brooklyn turbine overlooking Wellington from the suburb of Brooklyn. It was installed by Enercon and is an E44 model, with a 45 metre tower, and was just being checked over for electrical security when I visited. Installation of the turbine itself took just over a week, and it will be generating electricity by the time this article goes to press. The Brooklyn wind turbine is owned by Meridian, but has been adopted by the Brooklyn community.

Greg Sise (from EnergyLink) and I also had a meeting with Electricity Authority to discuss some of the challenges we’ve faced in trying to build new generation and provide electricity directly to our own community. As a result, we’re very hopeful that the Electricity Authority will pursue investigations into improving market access for small generators that want to sell electricity into their own community.

To keep an eye on things, check out our Blueskin Energy website: http://www.blueskinenergy.co.nz/ . There is also information about this project on the BRCT website (www.brct.org.nz), and you can find us on Facebook as Blueskin Resilient Communities Trust, on Twitter as @BlueskinPower and you can call 03 4822249 or call in to visit and find out more about any of our work.