The Government-owned Mighty River Power has initiated a tender process for securing long term carbon credits from local suppliers, representing a first for carbon trading in New Zealand.
The invitation to tender has been extended to the NZ market only, and interest is expected from the agriculture and forestry sectors.
General manager – operations, Fraser Whineray said running a tender process for carbon credit supply was a positive step towards meeting the company’s carbon obligations under the Emissions Trading Scheme, enacted last month.
He said from July 1 Mighty River Power was required to offset any emissions it produces through its electricity generation activities.
“We believe it makes commercial sense to standardise and accelerate the process for meeting our carbon obligation by putting it to tender,” he said.
The tender process will help Mighty River Power build on its existing portfolio of domestic carbon off-take agreements The Company has recently signed two agreements with Lake Taupo land owners within the Lake Taupo Protection Trust (LTPT) area.
These agreements support delivery of water quality benefits for Lake Taupo by encouraging forestry conversions on lake shore land, reducing nitrogen run-off into the lake.
Tenders were being invited for supplying a preferred quantity of at least 15,000 carbon units per annum, or 250 hectares on a preferred term of 15 years.
Tender documents were made available this week.
In another announcement Mighty River confirmed it had sold its 50% interest in the Tirohia landfill power station located just south of Paeroa.
The power station, commissioned in September 2008, has been sold for an undisclosed sum to Mighty River Power’s joint venture partner H G Leach & Co, which is also the station operator.
Mighty River Power said the landfill station – which generates up to 1MW - was not considered strategic due to its small generation capacity relative to the remainder of the Mighty River Power’s generation portfolio.
The Company sold its Silverstream, Wellington landfill power station in 2009 and its interests in two Auckland landfill power stations – Rosedale in Albany and Greenmount in East Tamaki, in June.
This latest sale means Mighty River Power has now divested all its interests in landfill power generation.