Lines companies (the distributors of electricity in New Zealand) must meet annual reliability targets set by the Commerce Commission. They are always looking for ways of reducing any interruptions to achieve these targets while reducing the costs of dealing with these issues.
Protecting local wildlife
A surprisingly common cause of outages in different parts of New Zealand is our native falcon, the Kārearea. Due to the length of their wingspan, they often bridge the lines when they take off, causing electrocution and death. ENI has been collaborating with Aurora Energy, Delta Utility Services and the Department of Conservation to apply some innovative thinking that secures electricity supply while protecting native birds.
The result of this collaboration is the Falcon Shield, designed to insulate and safeguard the cross-arms to make them safer for Kārearea and reducing the chances of a line outage. The shield is made from the same recycled plastic ENI use when manufacturing power distribution boxes. ENI led the conceptual design process and subsequent manufacturing for the Falcon Shield.