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waitaki valley

Benmore Dam

Explore the Waitaki Valley Meridian Energy Dams.

These huge structures provide natural power to businesses and households across New Zealand.

Benmore hydro station, located in the Waitaki Valley, has six 90 megawatt generating units, and a generation output of up to 540 megawatts.

Benmore is the country’s second-largest hydro station after Manapōuri. It generates enough electricity each year for about 298,000 average New Zealand homes.

The Benmore power station is located on New Zealand’s largest manmade lake – Lake Benmore – and is New Zealand’s largest earth dam.

Construction on the dam started in 1958. The lake was filled in December 1964, and the first power was produced in January 1965.

Initially, Benmore was going to be a concrete dam like Waitaki, but advances in dam building techniques meant Benmore was able to be built using earth.

At the time of construction, the dam was the largest in the Southern Hemisphere and the project was the biggest of its kind in New Zealand.

Watch some videos about Benmore Dam from Meridian Energy

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