Southdown Power Station

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Southdown Power Station
Southdown Power Station stacks.jpg
Southdown Power Station's turbine stacks
Southdown Power Station is located in New Zealand
Southdown Power Station
Location of Southdown Power Station in New Zealand
Country New Zealand
Location Southdown, Auckland City
Coordinates 36°55′39″S 174°49′38″E / 36.927563°S 174.827328°E / -36.927563; 174.827328Coordinates: 36°55′39″S 174°49′38″E / 36.927563°S 174.827328°E / -36.927563; 174.827328
Status Baseload and Peak
Commission date December 1996
Owner(s) Mighty River Power
Thermal power station
Primary fuel Natural gas
Tertiary fuel Diesel
Cogeneration? Yes
Combined cycle? Yes
Power generation
Units operational 3× Gas
1× Steam
Make and model General Electric
Nameplate capacity 170 MW
Annual generation 850 GWh

Southdown Power Station is a natural gas-fired combined cycle gas turbine cogeneration power station in Southdown, a suburb in southern Auckland City, New Zealand. It is New Zealand's northernmost power station with a capacity exceeding 50 MW.


The plant was developed by the Southdown Cogeneration Joint Venture, a joint venture between TransAlta and Mighty River Power.[1] The plant had two LM6000 gas turbines and one steam turbine, fueled on natural gas and producing 114MW. The plant was expected to emit about 410,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide annually.[2]

In 2000, Mighty River Power purchased 50% of the plant[3] and purchased the remainder in 2002.[4] A third LM6000 gas turbine was added in 2007. This is operated in open cycle mode.


Currently, Southdown is owned and operated by electricity generator Mighty River Power, and is used to complement the company's renewable hydroelectric and geothermal stations. The station, strategically located in the south-central Auckland urban area, provides voltage support for the city, and helps meet the peak demand requirements in the Auckland region. Southdown is also extensively used during dry periods, when there is insufficient water to run Mighty River Power's eight hydroelectric power stations on the Waikato River at full capacity.

Apart from generating 170 MW of electricity for the wider Auckland area, Southdown also provides steam to the local industrial area near the station. At full capacity, the station can provide 180 tonnes (177 long tons; 198 short tons) of steam per hour, piped from the station to consumers at pressures of 155 and 910 kilopascals (22.5 and 132.0 psi).

In the 2008 - 2009 financial year, Might River Power reported 249,407 tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions from Southdown.[5]

On March 24 2015, Mighty River Power announced that it would be decommissioning Southdown.[6] The plant will be shut down and the generator sold overseas.[7]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Decision 280 (PDF), Commerce Commission, 13 September 1996 
  2. ^ NZPA/NZH (24 March 1995). "Mercury Energy plan to build plant in Auckland". Royal Society of New Zealand. Archived from the original on 9 July 2012. 
  3. ^ Rotherham, Fiona (29 March 2000). "Southdown joint-venture deal in offing". NZ Herald. Archived from the original on 9 July 2012. 
  4. ^ "Mighty River Power secures interests in Southdown co-generation plant" (Press release). Mighty River Power. 19 November 2002. 
  5. ^ "Climate Change : Our Footprint". Mighty River Power. 2012. Retrieved 9 July 2012. 
  6. ^ James Weir (24 March 2015). "Mighty River Power to close Southdown power station". Stuff. Retrieved 24 March 2015. 
  7. ^ "Mighty River shutting down Southdown station". New Zealand Herald. 24 March 2015. Retrieved 24 March 2015. 

External links[edit]