Oil & Gas

Add to favourites

From the earliest days of settlement, traces of oil and gas have been found in central Taranaki

In the late 1880's, inflammable methane gas was found bubbling up from the Wawiri Stream near Toko.  Unsuccessful drilling attempts were made at various sites in the east of the district. The first successful well was drilled in Central Taranaki when Petrocorp developed a site on Standish Road, near Toko, in 1978.  Other wells followed on Mountain Road between Stratford and Midhirst, and at Pukengahu, Ngaere and Te Popo

Later, the TAWN field, comprising several productive wells at Tariki, Ahuroa, Waihapa and Ngaere, yielded significant volumes of oil and gas, and Waihapa Production Station in Pukengahu was opened in 1993.  More sophisticated equipment and technology saw earlier wells reopened, with the introduction of directional drilling and success in discovering deposits in shallower, fractured limestone.  Increasingly since the 1960s, Stratford has provided labour and resources for ongoing energy exploration and production, as well as for several associated downstream industries. 


It seems certain that this important industry will continue to contribute to Stratford's future economic viability.