Contact Energy has announced that it will proceed with the construction of the Tauhara Geothermal plant for an estimated investment of $418 million. The project will have an installed capacity of 150 MW and will be located on the Tauhara field, near Taupo. The company is set to begin construction of the project shortly and will expect to complete the project by the middle of 2023.
The earthworks for the project have already begun; about 800,000 cubic metres of dirt will be needed to level the site, create storage ponds, and also set up a visual berm planted with native trees in front of the station by Broadlands Road. The project construction will provide employment to about 500 people. Once commissioned, the project will generate 1,300 GWh of electricity annually.
In June 2020, the company had signed an engineering procurement and construction contract with Sumitomo Corporation and Fuji Electric for the development of the plant. However, there were concerns over its deployment as an important iron smelter in New Zealand was set to shut down. Sumitomo Corporation is leading the build, in partnership with construction company, Naylor Love and Fuji Electric who will supply single shaft steam turbines.
Contact Energy is a New Zealand-based power producer that was established in 1996. The company owns and operates 11 power stations and produces 80-85 per of their electricity from our renewable hydro and geothermal stations. The company also operates gas and diesel-fired power stations in the country.