New record renewable share of electricity generation in New Zealand

Published: 09 March 2023

The renewable share of electricity generation is at its highest level on record, according to data published today by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE).

The latest New Zealand Energy Quarterly, covering the 3 months from October to December 2022, provides quarterly data and analysis on energy supply, demand, prices, and associated greenhouse gas emissions.

“Today’s figures show the renewable share of electricity generation at 94.7% due to high hydro generation in the North Island. The previous record was 94.6% during the March 1980 quarter,” says Mike Hayward, Manager, Markets in the Digital, Data & Insights group, MBIE.

Electricity generation from hydro was up 38.9% and wind was up 1.1% when compared to the December 2021 quarter. The higher hydro generation was driven by rain in the North Island which was above or well above normal for much of the quarter.

“The increased generation from renewables led to a decreased reliance on coal and natural gas for electricity generation. Electricity generation from coal was down 16.5% and natural gas was down 47.6% from the previous December quarter,” Mike Hayward said.

Coal imports dropped to 36 thousand tonnes, the lowest level since 2013. This was down 90.8% on the December quarter 2021, becoming the lowest amount of coal imports since 2013. Coal imports have averaged around 200 thousand tonnes per quarter since 2013.

For more insights

New Zealand Energy Quarterly

Climate summaries 

Some climate summaries for October, November and December are available on the National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA) website:

October 2022 climate summary(external link) 

November 2022 climate summary(external link)

December 2022 climate summary(external link)

MBIE media contact