31 Mar 2006
March 31 2006 represents a milestone for the West Coast and electricity generator and retailer Trustpower, as TrustPower files an application for resource consent for its proposed Arnold Hydro scheme with the West Coast Regional Council.
The scheme, which with a capacity of up to 46MW and an annual output of 220 GWh, has evolved out of TrustPower's original Dobson generation proposal. It is designed to assist the West Coast meet growing electricity demand, and improve efficiency through reduced electricity losses from transmission.
Under the Arnold proposal, which has a projected cost of $185m, water will be drawn from the Arnold River at the existing Arnold dam, and conveyed to a storage pond and power station before being discharged back to the Arnold River via a regulation pond.
TrustPower Chief Executive Keith Tempest says getting to the point of actually filing a resource consent application for significant West Coast generation represents a milestone after many years of effort to bring adequate generation to the people of the region.
"With the benefit of time we believe we now have a proposal that will meet the needs of the region, both in terms of generating electricity, and maintaining a good balance between development and the protection of social, environmental, recreational and cultural values."
TrustPower considers that its extensive process of design, assessment, consultation, thorough environmental, social and economic benefits and continual re-evaluation has been beneficial. It has produced a scheme design that will provide a substantial, secure, sustainable source of urgently needed electricity for the West Coast. In addition, during the construction period, the scheme will generate employment opportunities and secondary economic benefits.
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