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Canterbury to house NZ's largest solar housing project

The country’s largest solar subdivision is on its way to Canterbury, where new homes at Christchurch's Highfield subdivision will have solar installations providing around a quarter of their energy needs.

Maxim Projects, a developer involved in leading the rebuilding of Christchurch, is partnering with Meridian Energy and SolarCity on the project.

The solar installations will be standard for each new home constructed by Maxim and will also be available across its 3,500 lot property portfolio.

SolarCity chief executive Andrew Booth said the system would also allow homes to feed generated power back into the grid.

“The solar across Maxim’s developments will showcase the important role solar will play in rebuilding a more sustainable future for Canterbury. Solar is one of the fastest growing energy technologies in the world, simply because it is clean, reliable and a readily available alternative to fossil fuels.”

Christchurch firm EnaSolar, which is manufacturing the solar inverters for the project, says there has been an increasing demand for its technology that will continue to increase.

“A project of this scale will clearly become the benchmark for the building industry and consumers alike wishing to adopt solar energy, not just in Christchurch but throughout New Zealand,” said managing director Gary Foot.

Meridian Energy said the project builds on its solar hot water campaign launched last July, aiming to reduce electricity bills and New Zealand’s carbon footprint.