A new discussion paper released by regional development agency Venture Taranaki has highlighted offshore wind as an important energy opportunity for the region, and the nation, and calls for further investigation of the resource. 

The paper, Offshore Wind – An Energy Opportunity for Taranaki, 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. Taranaki’s deep 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.