Topic: Environment

Ngāwhā locals concerned over possible geothermal power plant expansion

By Dean Nathan
  • Northland

Ngāwhā locals remain on edge with the geothermal essence of their community being tampered with.  This was the crux of submissions made today to a resource consent application by the Top Energy company to expand its geothermal power plant at Ngāwhā. 

While Kaikohe businesses are happy with plans for Top Energy geothermal power to expand at Ngāwhā, the locals however are less excited with the idea, in fear the expansion may damage the regions famous hot pools.

This week the company is putting its case for resource consent to independent commissioners.

Renata Tane says, “From our perspective they're already damaging the life-force of the springs and geothermal activity and it's affecting our treasure. So what they're now proposing will totally kill it and we will not support that.”

Top Energy didn't want to make comment on the matter until submissions to their application are completed.

Percy Tipene says, “At this stage we can only object because we do not know what effect the proposal will have on our springs.”

It is said that Te Ngāwhā provides medicinal benefits for health problems. Ancestor Tākauere who came from Hawaiki is said to be the famous taniwha who resides in the ngāwhā.

Tane says, “We need to care for our treasure Takauere to retain the warmth and life-force of the land our mother earth and we're doing our utmost to assist the whole of Ngāpuhi to maintain our rights here forever.”