Increasing renewable energy generation in the north Waikato.

The Waerenga Solar Farm can help address the increase in electricity generation anticipated to be required to cater for New Zealand’s growing population, the electrification of fossil fuel energy demands and to achieve the country’s renewable energy targets. Solar photovoltaic generation is currently underrepresented in New Zealand by world standards.

The Waerenga Solar Farm project will consist of approximately 304,000 solar panels, associated infrastructure, a battery energy storage system and a new National Grid substation. The predicted energy output from the project is approximately 320 GWh/year, which could power more than 46,000 homes.



Worked with

Chapman Tripp
Contaminated Site Investigation
Hanmore Land Management
Paul Heveldt
Te Hira Consultant
Sian Keith Archaeology
Styles Group

Project date

2021 - 2024

Waerenga Solar Farm Limited (WSFL), through its parent entity Island Green Power UK Limited, entered into a long-term lease agreement with the landowners of a 385-hectare site in Waerenga to construct, operate and maintain a 190-megawatt peak solar farm. 

Boffa Miskell advised WSFL on planning requirements for the project, including inputs into the application to the Ministry for the Environment for the project to be referred to an expert consenting panel under the COVID-19 Recovery (Fast-track Consenting) Act 2020, the preparation and lodgement of the resource consent application for the project, the coordination of the supporting technical assessments, and responding to requests from the Waerenga Solar Farm expert consenting panel.

Boffa Miskell’s consultants also led the landscape and visual assessment, ecological assessment and GIS/visualisation inputs into the resource consent application and led stakeholder engagement activities. 

Transpower New Zealand Limited were a joint applicant for the project, working alongside WSFL and Boffa Miskell, for the construction and operation of the substation and transmission-associated connections which will facilitate the transmission of energy from the proposed solar farm into the National Grid.

In December 2023, the Waerenga Solar Farm expert consenting panel – appointed by the Environmental Protection Authority – granted consent to WSFL and Transpower for the Waerenga Solar Farm project subject to conditions

Agricultural activities, including sheep grazing, will continue on the site and retain the productivity of the land. The project includes environmental enhancement, through significant sections of riparian and screening planting, along with the retention of existing mature vegetation.