Wed, Apr 17, 2024 4:40 PM

All a buzz over aircraft charging win


Paula Hulburt

Marlborough Airport has been chosen by Air New Zealand  bosses to help keep their first all-electric aircraft in the air.

The regional airport is set to support the new aircraft technology with a charging framework.

The move will help ensure the craft can make it back over the Strait to their Wellington headquarters.

Marlborough Airport Chief Executive Officer Dean Heiford. Photo: File

Marlborough Airport Chief Executive Officer Dean Heiford says supporting the national airline is a “big step” for the region’s own sustainability journey.

“This is a big step for us on our own sustainability journey that we wouldn’t have been able to achieve without partnership.

“We’re looking forward to sharing our learnings with other regional airports across New Zealand.

“Hosting the demonstrator with Wellington will further cement Marlborough as an important hub to keep New Zealand connected across the Cook Strait.”

Air New Zealand selected the Wellington-Marlborough route for commercial demonstrator flights with the Beta ALIA.

Cargo-only flights with NZ Post are set to take to the skies in 2026.

Air New Zealand’s Chief Sustainability Officer, Kiri Hannifin says the purpose of the commercial demonstrator is to set the New Zealand aviation system up for introducing lower emissions aircraft.

“We are incredibly grateful to both Wellington and Marlborough airports for being so willing to take on a leadership role in supporting Air New Zealand to establish next generation aircraft capability in our business.

“Their involvement is critical in supporting the infrastructure required to fly next-generation aircraft, and they’ll help lead the way in supporting airports across Aotearoa to make the changes needed for us to fly larger lower-emissions aircraft on our domestic network from 2030.”

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