Successfully completed on time and budget at the end of 2014, the A$260 million (£140 million) Mt Mercer wind farm is the first NEC project undertaken in Australia. It is also the first wind farm to be built in Australia by Meridian Energy, New Zealand’s largest renewable electricity generator and a major user of NEC contracts since the early 2000s.
Meridian engaged its main two construction partners on the Mt Mercer project under NEC3 Engineering and Construction Contracts (ECC) in September 2012. It is believed to be the first time NEC contracts have been used in Australia.
Downer EDI was awarded a A$70 million (£38 million) ECC for the design and construction of the main electrical and civil works, including the substation, underground collector system, internal road network, crane hardstandings and wind turbine foundations. Downer has extensive capabilities in the Australian renewable energy sector having previously delivered in excess of 1GW generating capacity on 11 wind farm developments across the country.
Senvion Australia (formerly REpower) was contracted under a separate ECC to supply and install the 64 MM92 wind turbines. The ultra-reliable German-designed units, of which over 1400 are in use worldwide, deliver their rated power output of 2.05MW at wind speeds of just 12.5m/s.
Meridian has successfully used the Conject system on a number of its other NEC-procured schemes including the NZ$169 million (£85 million) Mill Creek wind farm near Wellington, New Zealand and the company’s asset management programme, which has an average annual value of NZ$30 million (£15 million).