23 Aug 2010

Contact calling tenders for geothermal power plant

8:26 am on 23 August 2010

Contact Energy is dusting off its geothermal plans, saying its logical to consider developing renewable sources amid limited gas reserves.

After shelving its proposed Te Mihi geothermal power plant near Taupo because of higher material and funding costs last year, Contact is now calling for construction tenders.

Chief executive David Baldwin says the project may be viable.

But he says gas-fired generation is needed to ensure reliable electricity supply and prices have to keep rising to reflect that.

Profit for the company, the largest listed energy generator and retailer in New Zealand, declined 6% to $150 million in the year to June.