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Hiringa and Waitomo to partner to develop New Zealand’s first hydrogen refueling stations network

New Zealand energy companies Waitomo Group and Hiringa Energy intend to work in partnership to develop New Zealand’s first nationwide hydrogen refueling stations network.


Hiringa Energy’s initial refueling station plan.

Taranaki-based Hiringa Energy is the first company in New Zealand dedicated to the supply of green hydrogen (produced via electrolysis), providing solutions for industry, the public sector, and transport operators. Waikato-based Waitomo Group is New Zealand’s fastest-growing independent fuel retailer.

Together the two will work on the detailed engineering requirements and consenting for a network of hydrogen refueling sites, some of which will be on existing Waitomo Fuel Stops. Initial locations have been selected, with plans for a further 20 stations to be developed across both the North and South Island.

Heavy transport makes up only four percent of our vehicles, but they’re responsible for over 25 percent of our total vehicle emissions. Hydrogen is the key technology that will allow these fleets to stay on the road—a mass-market, clean energy solution that can have a real impact on reducing our transport emissions.

—Hiringa Energy CEO and Co-Founder, Andrew Clennett

Waitomo Managing Director Jimmy Ormsby says his third-generation, family-run company has been evolving its business model over the last 70 years to meet New Zealand’s unique energy requirements.

Adding low emission alternative fuel solutions to our network is a no-brainer. We want to leave a legacy for the next generation of Ormsby’s to continue in our footsteps. The exciting opportunities that green hydrogen technology offers allows us to deliver on that.

—Jimmy Ormsby

Development and consenting for the first hydrogen refueling sites will get under way this year. The two companies will work together to identify and scope further sites for development of the network in 2020.

Established in Te Kuiti more than 70 years ago by Desmond Ormsby, Waitomo Group now has 65 sites stretching from Paihia in the north and as far south as Christchurch.



Outside of the States, Canada and Australia where long distance is very long distance, it is looking hopeful that hydrogen can power the trucking industry where batteries can't do the job in cities etc,

To my mind the massive 25% of emissions from trucking is indicative of where subsidies should be expended, way, way more effectively than subsidising the wealty to buy luxmobile long range BEVs.

If people are prepared to put up with the range limitations, then short range BEVs are much more economic ex subsidy.

However a hybrid can vastly reduce both pollutants and GHG with minimal or no subside , and are a much more effective solution for general use.

If subsidies were concentrated on taxis, buses and commercial vehicle the money would be many times more effectively spent.


Twelve sites for the south island, which is by my eyeballs about 400 miles top to bottom.

Maybe you can use this for heavy trucks on certain fixed routes, but aside from them and users in the immediate vicinity of the stations it is totally infeasible for any others.  I'm assuming that NZ is pretty much as wired as rural America is (meaning, over 99%); electric vehicles are already practical.  I would not be the least bit surprised if this bit of hypedrogen promo goes quietly bankrupt in a few years, unless it receives government subsidies.


The use of hydrogen for trucks, buses shipping and so on will clearly facilitate hydrogen stations for FCEV cars.

At the moment hydrogen use is concentrated on the petroleum, the fertilser industry and so on.

More general usage obviously makes it easier to get the hydrogen to regular filling stations.

Their diesel trains are also a prime target for FCEV trains.


I lived in NZ for 6 months 18 years ago. The one thing I remember about vehicles is that they used to get a lot of 2nd hand vehicles imported from Japan. I was told that this is because as cars age it is very difficult and expensive for Japanese people to get there vehicles to pass yearly inspections. So they sell export them to NZ.

Japan seems to be going big on Hydrogen in vehicles ... So if what I was told was true and is still true today then this may be a wise investment for the cheap Hydrogen vehicles that will come the way of NZ.

However if this is not the case, I can't see any logical case for Hydrogen over pure EV in truck, car or bus, as its cost per mile over electricity is just so much more that it is worth someone building a truck with 800+kwh battery or a car with 200kwh battery

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