Network Tasman has released an update regarding the outcomes of their pre-feasibility studies regarding hydro on the Matakitaki River. The good news is that kayakers’ have been heard loud and clear by the company.
Key values highlighted by the submissions include the importance to kayakers of the middle and lower sections of the Matakitaki. Ian Kearney, Chairman of Network Tasman, stated, “The investigations have show that the upper reaches of the river could be better suited to hydro generation because of their geology. The Matakitaki middle and lower sections, downstream from Horse Bridge and the Glenroy river, are the least preferred sites for electricity generation from a technical perspective.” The company appears to have ruled out development on the Glenroy because of the sediment load.
However, the company has not ruled out future hydro investigation on the middle and lower sections, simply stating that “it could be many years down the track, if at all.” If development does occur upstream of Horse Bridge, the effect on downstream flows will be of great concern to kayakers.