19/04/2013 - General News
Z Energy today announced that the company had received resource consent for an additional 25 million litres of storage at Lyttelton Port of Christchurch.
Z has plans to build two new 10 million litre bulk fuel storage tanks at Lyttelton Port. Re-founding existing tanks will also increase storage at the port by an additional five million litres.
Z Chief Executive Mike Bennetts said that if the decision was made to build the additional tanks at Lyttelton Port, it would significantly improve the level of fuel security in the South Island.
“We have yet to make a final decision on building the additional tankage, but getting the resource consent is another step in the right direction. One of the factors that would influence our final investment decision is Lyttelton Port’s ability to accommodate larger ships.
“On top of the 30 million litres we commissioned at Lyttelton in 2011, this additional tankage will start to address some of the serious infrastructure deficit that has developed over the last 20 - 30 years and enable a more secure and reliable supply of fuel to New Zealand. It will also enable Z to procure larger shipments of imported products that will lower freight costs,” said Mike.
Z is also currently in the preliminary engineering and consenting phase for additional bulk fuel storage at Mount Maunganui.
“We’ve decided Mount Maunganui and Lyttelton represent the most strategically important locations for additional bulk fuel storage. Together, these two potential projects represent a $40 million investment in 35 million litres of new bulk fuel storage at these ports,” said Mike.
The tightness of the fuel supply chain was demonstrated in March when the South Island experienced a diesel shortage and some competitor companies ran out of diesel at some sites.
Z also welcomed the announcement from Port of Tauranga in March that it had received approval to carry out a dredging project that would widen and deepen its shipping channels.
“The ability to import fuel on larger vessels can make for significant savings in freight. This can lower our costs which will make us more competitive in how we choose to price to our customers.
“The benefits could be even more widespread if a South Island port, particularly Lyttelton Port, could accommodate larger ships as it would improve the efficiency of transporting fuel to the South Island.”
“Combined with additional fuel storage capacity, this would further improve fuel security as we would be able to provide more stock cover and minimise the impact of any supply disruptions,” said Mike.