Crest Energy Limited ("Crest") first applied for resource consent for the project in July 2006, and revised its application in 2007. Following a hearing in 2008, the Northland Regional Council recommended that the Minister of Conservation approve a tidal power plant for 100 turbines. The decision was appealed to the Environment Court. An interim decision was issued in 2009 indicating a possible positive recommendation for the project subject to some additional fact finding and the preparation of a draft environmental management plan.
The Court in its final decision has now granted consent for 200 turbines, subject to Minister of Conservation approval for the restricted coastal activities. Conditions of the consent include a requirement that only three turbines are to be installed at the outset and must be monitored for two years before the staged installation of the remaining turbines.