Why is Meridian Energy (NZX:MEL) in news today?

September 07, 2022 03:01 PM NZST | By Manika
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  • In an investor update, Meridian Energy reveals its Climate Change Plan
  • It plans to generate more renewable energy and create vehicle charging infrastructure
  • The Green Hydrogen development plan is also underway

Meridian Energy Limited (NZX:MEL), which generates 100% of its energy from renewable sources like wind, water, and the sun, revealed details of its Climate Change Plan to its investors today. It said it would continue to develop additional renewable energy generation and vehicle charging infrastructure and would focus on green hydrogen production.

As climate change awareness increases, Meridian is seeking new generation opportunities to generate clean energy from its existing assets. In addition, it is also investing in new generation opportunities that will help in the decarbonisation of NZ’s energy system and provide growth for the company.

It is also contributing to transport electrification through new EV charging options. According to its plans, it would be able to offer comprehensive access to public chargers, fleet charging, and home charging through the Zero app.

                                                                             Image Source: © 2022 Kalkine Media

Main priorities

The two main priorities for MEL are to reduce gross operational emissions by 2030 and to help Kiwis to decarbonise.

The Company’s main near-term goal is to halve its 2021 emissions by 2030; this is an approved science-based target.

Meridian’s renewable development pipeline

MEL also defined its renewable development pipeline as 2.3 GW (5.4 TWh) of development options, out of which,1.1 GW is already secured with further battery sites acquired. The company will focus on North Island and South Island.

At the Ruakᾱkᾱ Energy Park in Northland, MEL is currently planning a 100/200MWh Battery Energy Storage System (BESS). It’s also planning a 75MW solar farm at this site. The team is working hard to get approval for the battery system by the end of this month, with the construction of BESS to start in 2023. The Company is also seeking consent for the solar farm with construction likely to start by early 2024.

Harapaki wind farm – Hawkes Bay

MEL’s Hawke’s Bay wind farm in Harapaki is currently under construction with NZ$448 million as capital costs. The project is on track with the first power unit scheduled for June 2023. Once it is fully operational, it is likely to power 70,000 homes. 

Southern Green Hydrogen

The Southern Green Hydrogen project is a collaboration between two energy majors-- Meridian and Contact Energy. This project aims to emerge as a joint entity to create a scale for new green hydrogen energy in New Zealand. This project seeks to make NZ energy independent and insulated from highly volatile international energy markets.

Furthermore, under its Forever Forests program, it plans to create a carbon sink by planting 1.5 million trees. This will create a forest cover to limit greenhouse emissions.


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