Taranaki is aiming to be at the forefront of the energy transition in New Zealand.
Offshore Wind opportunity in Taranaki
In 2020, Venture Taranaki released a discussion paper, Offshore Wind – An Energy Opportunity for Taranaki. This paper identifies that locations off the Taranaki coastline, especially South Taranaki, offer a promising potential for generating electricity from offshore wind, based on the strength of the wind resource and suitability from a bathymetric - water depth - perspective. Existing regional experience in the marine energy environment also makes it a natural fit for this increasingly deployed renewable energy source.
The paper highlights opportunities and hurdles in making such an option a reality for New Zealand, including the infrastructure and processes required, consumer demand and economics, the technologies involved, international developments, and the broad range of social, environmental, regulatory and other considerations which would need to be assessed in more detail to enable this new energy source for New Zealand to be developed.
Due to the national and international interest in this report, an offshore wind forum was held in New Plymouth in December 2020.
Offshore Future Energy Forum 2021
Following on from the success of the Offshore Wind Forum in 2020, the Offshore Future Energy Forum was held in New Plymouth on the 25 and 26 November 2021. This forum was co-hosted by Venture Taranaki and Ara Ake, with support from the New Zealand Wind Energy Association, Aotearoa Wave and Tidal Energy Association, BlueFloat Energy, Energy Estate, Elemental Group and WITT.
The forum featured presentations from domestic and international experts about offshore wind energy, wave and tidal energy, deep sea energy storage and power to x. Presentations and a recording of the sessions from across the two days can be found below:
Utilising renewable energy through Power to X
At the Offshore Future Energy Forum in December 2021, Venture Taranaki released a concept paper, Power to X: Transforming renewable electricity into green products and services. This paper builds off the Offshore Wind Discussion Document of 2020 and details the process of using excessive electricity, usually generated by offshore wind, to create green products and services which can be easily stored, transported and used to balance energy demand.
This is posed as a national opportunity, with the potential to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, develop new export markets and attract high-energy industry to New Zealand. Enabling Power to X also has the potential to allow for meaningful growth and diversification of our economy, as well as supporting the Just Transition process.
Taranaki is used as a case study to describe what steps would be required to enable a Power to X energy system in the future.
Taranaki is highlighted because of it’s existing energy sector expertise, physical infrastructure and reputation as being New Zealand’s energy hub.
Taranaki is leading the development of the hydrogen industry
Taranaki is taking advantage of the move to a low-emissions economy with the development of the hydrogen industry. The H2 Taranaki Roadmap to establish Taranaki hydrogen was launched in March 2019 by the Prime Minister, Rt. Hon Jacinda Ardern. It looks at the potential for Taranaki to leverage its existing skills and infrastructure to become a global leader in hydrogen production and utilisation.