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Balmoral hydro project

Ngāi Tahu Property and Meridian worked together on a proposed 15 megawatt hydro scheme on the Hurunui River in North Canterbury, known as the Balmoral Hydro Water project.

The scheme could generate 88 gigawatt hours a year, enough electricity for about 9,000 average New Zealand homes, and could also provide water for irrigation.

We applied for consents in December 2012 to take up to 15 cubic metres of water a second from the Hurunui River, downstream of the Mandamus River, to use for hydro generation and to discharge water back into the river.

The application was put on hold by Environment Canterbury (Ecan) until the Regional Plan was finalised.

During the period following lodgement, Meridian and Ngāi Tahu Property assessed the Balmoral project against their work plans.

Considering the demand outlook, the need to invest in new projects and the commercial attractiveness of projects Meridian already holds consents for, Meridian decided to withdraw from the Balmoral project. Ngāi Tahu Property will continue to pursue this hydro option independently.

Key Dates

  • January 2013 - Meridian and Ngāi Tahu Property lodge consent applications for the Balmoral Hydro project
  • January 2013 - ECan puts the application on hold until the Regional Plan is finalised
  • March 2014 - Meridian withdraws from the Balmoral project, allowing Ngāi Tahu Property to continue to pursue the project independently