MBIE released a discussion document Enabling Investment in Offshore Renewable Energy in December 2022. The discussion document identifies options to establish regulatory settings for developers to invest in undertaking feasibility studies.
A second consultation on the broader regulatory settings for infrastructure construction, operation and decommissioning is expected in mid-2023 with full regulatory settings to be finalised in 2024.
NZWEA welcomed the consultation and supports the proposed developer-led approach for offshore wind developments as it would enable more timely feasibility assessment with clearer accountabilities than under the other option identified - a government-led approach.
Given the expected cost of undertaking offshore wind feasibility assessments, particularly environmental studies, international competition for infrastructure and the recognition that developers have a wide range of other options the Association also supported the permit for feasibility activities approach rather than the second option of a collaborative approach.