Consented wind farms

Once a developer has thoroughly investigated a potential wind farm site, they may apply for resource consent.

Not all projects with a consent will be built. Many consented projects are currently on hold as the developer waits for market conditions and demand for renewable electricity to increase to make the wind farm commercially viable.

As a wind farm consent ages, it may need to be varied to take advantage of advancements in wind turbine technology. For example, the consent build envelope may not provide for newer model turbines that are available and in this situation the consent holder would need to apply for a consent variation.  A consent variation would involve an assessment of the scale of effects limited to the change requested.

The Association notes that the rapid improvement in wind turbine technology, including the increase in wind turbine rotor diameter, has seen an increase in turbine annual energy production by over 50% since 2010. We consider that for a number of existing consents the wind farm owner would achieve an improved commercial return from a successful consent variation.

In addition, some consented wind farms will require a further consent to build transmission infrastructure to enable development.

The following table lists projects that developers have wind farm consents for but have not begun construction.

Developer Region  Capa-city (MW) RMA Application publicly notified
Consent Expiry Date
Waverley Tilt Renewables South
130  July 2017  2027
Castle Hill Genesis Energy Northern Wairarapa 800 August 2011  2023
(stage 2)
Tilt Renewables Clutha 160 November 2009  2019
Turitea Mercury Manawatu  up to 180  September 2011  2021
Central Wind Meridian Ruapehu & Rangatikei up to 130   July 2008  2020
Mt Cass MainPower Hurunui up to 78  June 2008  2020
Kaiwera Downs 
Tilt Renewables
up to 240
November 2007
Hawkes Bay (Maungaharuru) Meridian Hawke's Bay up to 130 May 2005  2023
Titiokura (Maungaharuru)
Hawke's Bay
up to 60
April 2005
Taumatatotara Ventus Waikato  up to 10.0    2024
Hurunui Meridian Energy Hurunui  up to 75.9 November 2013  2023
Puketoi Mercury Tararua District up to 318   2012  2022