Waimangu have installed solar panels on the visitor centre roof as part of their wider commitment to sustainable tourism.
Waimangu Volcanic Valley is an area known for the power of Mount Tarawera and the geothermal features in the valley. Now the eco-tourism attraction is using solar energy to power its visitor centre in a bid to reduce their carbon footprint.
They have installed solar panels to the roof of their visitor centre, with the power generated by the panels being used for the café, retail store and visitor centre. The panels were installed in December 2018, as part of Waimangu’s wider commitment to sustainability.
Waimangu Operations Manager Craig Wishart with the solar panels.
Waimangu General Manager David Blackmore has been keeping track of the power savings since installing the panels and said that it’s great to see a measurable impact of the change.
“To date we’ve saved over $1,000 on our power bill. We measure and report on the results at every board meeting, and the whole team here are always keen to hear how they’re going. It’s great to see the numbers stack up.”
Waimangu Volcanic Valley is a scenic reserve, the only example of a native New Zealand eco-system regenerating from total destruction caused by the 1886 eruption of Mount Tarawera. Because of this historic and environmental significance, looking after the environment has always been core to the activity of this eco-tourism attraction.
Operations Supervisor, Lily Florence with a Goodnature possum trap.
The team at Waimangu work with the Department of Conservation on predator control, and work to protect the native birds, insects and wildlife that call the valley home.
Initiatives like installing the solar panels show that the businesses commitment to sustainable tourism goes further than the work in the valley that the guests can see.
“We love sharing our unique natural environment with guests from all over the world. It’s great that we can also make the most of the natural resources we have available to us to minimise our impact on the environment” Blackmore said.