New Zealand’s best commute? Meridian selects zero-emission hydrofoil ferry for Lake Manapōuri

  • Climate Action

One of New Zealand’s most iconic lakes is getting a high-tech upgrade, with Meridian Energy set to bring the world’s first electric hydro-foiling ferry to Lake Manapōuri. 
The Swedish-designed Candela P-12 will provide daily transport for staff and contractors servicing the country’s largest hydro power station. It’ll save 240 tons of carbon emissions each year – equivalent to taking 52 petrol cars off the road. 
Tania Palmer, Meridian’s GM of Generation, says it’s just one way the company is reducing its emissions from internal transport, contributing to Meridian’s goal of halving its emissions by 2030.  
“We have to be bold and innovative to reduce emissions. This deal is the result of a global search to identify the latest and best technology for our needs, and one that’s suitable for such an incredible natural environment. 
“The Candela P-12 is an exciting replacement for the diesel ferry we currently use to transport people across the lake to the power station. It’ll drastically reduce emissions and, at the same time, give our team what’s arguably the best and most spectacular commute in the world.” 

Meridian has signed a deal with Swedish company Candela to provide the P-12 and will be the first customer outside Europe to take delivery of the electric shuttle. 
Flying on computer-guided hydrofoils, the P-12’s hull rises above the water at high speed, reducing friction and drag by around 80% when compared to traditional vessels, and allowing for long range and high-speed travel using battery power only. At a cruise speed of 25 knots, the wake behind the vessel is less than 15cm high, which will minimise disruption to the shoreline of Lake Manapōuri – part of a UNESCO World Heritage Area and home to many indigenous species, including longfin eel. 
“We’re excited to partner with a global leader in the transition to sustainable energy and global decarbonisation and thrilled to soon see our P-12 in action on Lake Manapōuri,” says Gustav Hasselskog, Candela CEO. 
“We thank Meridian for leading the charge towards a cleaner, greener future.” 
The Candela P-12 is expected to begin operating on Lake Manapōuri in 2025. 


For media queries, please contact:
Lachlan Forsyth
Meridian Media and Content Manager
021 243 5342