Our Assets & Infrastructure
Trustpower has a strong and diverse infrastructure portfolio that is geographically spread, providing lots of opportunities to innovate. The current focus is on maximising profitability, managing risk, making sure assets are as efficient as possible with an emphasis on operational excellence, all while keeping an eye on future new generation possibilities.
Trustpower’s large portfolio of power stations across New Zealand generates greater than 99% of its electricity from renewable resources. In total, Trustpower has hydro generating capacity of 487 megawatts and its current average annual output is 1,917GWh per year.
We are investing in an asset management strategy refresh and roadmap exercise over the upcoming year. This continuous improvement activity will help us gain valuable insights from our asset performance and continue to invest in the right areas.
We continue to embed our recently developed project management framework. This means we engage stakeholders early in the framing and development phase, and front end load our engineering effort on our larger projects. With a healthy pipeline of value enhancing and risk reduction projects, execution discipline and certainty of delivered outcomes for these projects is important to securing value.
Over the past couple of years, a combination of targeted maintenance and small capital projects has helped Trustpower to futureproof its assets.
A continuous improvement philosophy has identified opportunities to improve profitability through relatively small, yet effective, initiatives. One recent example is the replacement of a diesel generator with a modern wind-powered version to feed the batteries that open and close gates at a remote power scheme.
We have identified a pipeline of opportunities that could add an estimated 60GWh per year to our annual output by augmenting our existing generation asset base for a modest investment. These opportunities include turbine or generator upgrades that improve efficiency and capacity, improved water capture to maximise generation and reduce spill.
It is a credit to Trustpower’s predecessors that some of the company’s most valuable hydro assets are more than 100 years old. Trustpower expects to keep operating them for as long again, or longer by protecting, upgrading and enhancing these assets.
Trustpower recently completed a major upgrade of two generators at the Coleridge power station, which opened on Canterbury’s Rakaia River in 1915. The project has ensured a further 40 years of reliable operation for the station.
We took the opportunity of an eight-week full scheme outage at Waipori required to undertake critical tunnel repairs, to complete a comprehensive programme of planned routine and preventative maintenance, including preparatory inspection work for some upcoming generator replacement projects.
Trustpower’s Internet team constantly monitors data use to maximise existing capacity and keep ahead of rapidly increasing demand. They can anticipate where additional bandwidth is required to maintain broadband speeds.
Trustpower’s investment in greater network control, rather than outsourcing to other providers, has resulted in faster connections and better network resilience for Trustpower’s customers. Trustpower now owns and operates sites in three countries – New Zealand, Australia and the United States.
Trustpower is now the country’s fourth largest broadband retailer by number of connections and it’s carrier-grade national Internet Service Provider (ISP) network performance has been ranked in the top 3 of Netflix’s ISP independent speed survey every month over the year.
In September, we provided streaming services for the Anchor Aims Games production company, enabling the week-long sports tournament to be streamed internationally. We also leveraged our network to provide free public wi-fi across 13 sites for the 11,500 competitors and their supporters.
The average data consumption per household nationally continues to increase dramatically year on year, driven by the increasing popularity of streaming video-on-demand services. Trustpower’s average customer per month usage across both fibre and copper connections has increased from 54GB in January 2015 to 186GB in January 2020. Internet traffic peaked to record levels in late March as the impact of the New Zealand COVID-19 pandemic response took hold, with Trustpower quickly responding by increasing trans-Tasman bandwidth.
Trustpower has identified the need to better utilise its maintenance management systems to further improve performance. Our focus this year on reviewing our asset management strategy and roadmap exercise will ensure we continue to identify and prioritise routine and preventative maintenance at our power schemes. Part of this focus will be to review the way we use our computerised maintenance management system, and how we ensure we get the best data and insights from the use of the system. This means making the interaction with the system simple and more efficient.
Fibre connections, data speed and data usage will continue to grow as New Zealanders become more accustomed to relying on broadband for their businesses and entertainment. We will continue to invest in our own network capacity and move away from third party supply.
Outage creates opportunities at the Waipori power scheme
Trustpower turned a rare eight week shutdown at one of its largest power schemes into an opportunity to undertake major maintenance, overhauls and improvements.