Monday, August 1, 2016

New Zealand: Mighty River Power is Now Officially Mercury

Mercury rules out more power stations (RNZ)

Mercury is the new name for Mighty River Power, which operates geothermal plants and dams on the Waikato River. It has adopted the name of its retail arm and ditched Mighty River Power, which was deemed too multi-syllabic and had insufficient marketing zing.

One of New Zealand energy's big four, Mercury, thinks it is unlikely to have to build any new power stations for several years. Instead it is increasing output from its existing electricity generating systems.

The comments match others who have said for several years that New Zealand has enough electricity to make any new power stations economically risky.

Instead, Mercury is working on a quieter way of increasing its supply of electricity than building entirely new power plants. It is doing this by raising the productivity of power plants that already exist.

"One of our geothermal power stations, Kawerau, was originally built for 90 megawatts and at full capacity would now produce 103 to 104," said chief executive Fraser Whineray. "That is north of a 10 percent increase."