The New Zealand wind energy industry is composed of diverse businesses. Some offer highly specialised services and others provide general services to support wind farms.
NZWEA knows of more than 100 businesses associated with activities during the planning and project development, construction and installation, and operation and maintenance (O&M) phases of wind farm activity. Most of these businesses are engaged across areas such as consulting and engineering services, construction and installation, and wind energy facility development.
New Zealand’s wind energy industry exports its expertise. Several NZ organisations develop and own wind farms in Australia. Some companies are developing skills and expertise in New Zealand and exporting it to markets in Australia, Europe and Asia. New Zealand can expect to grow its share of service exports as the industry expands.
The topography of New Zealand also makes wind farm construction challenging with innovation solutions needed to enable the development of remote sites with an excellent wind resource. For example, the construction of the West Wind Wind Farm at a rural site near Makara beach. West Wind is a challenging site to access from Wellington, as local roads are narrow and winding. Turbine components from overseas arrived at Picton, at the top of the South Island. Once unloaded, they were delivered across the Cook Strait to the wind farm site by barge.
Turbine components were offloaded at a temporary wharf in Oteranga Bay. Forty-two kilometres of road linked the wharf and the turbine platforms. In most places the roads are seven metres wide.