Delivering Successful Projects


Thomas Zink is a commercially astute engineer with over 30 years experience in project management and project development including working in design office, construction site, plant commissioning and operating environments within the electricity generation, pollution control, mining, and pulp and paper industries in New Zealand, Australia, Germany, Canada, and Malaysia. Has successfully developed and/or delivered several large (NZ$100m plus) electricity generation projects.

Active in all facets of the project lifecycle, from concept design and business case development, resource consenting, tendering and contracting, construction and commissioning, through to reporting overall progress up to Board level.

Self-employed, trading as Verso Consulting Ltd a New Zealand registered company, providing project development and project management services to industry.

Chartered Professional Engineer (CPEng - Management), New Zealand
Bachelor of Engineering, Mechanical

Professional Memberships

Institute of Professional Engineers of New Zealand (IPENZ)
Verein Deutscher Ingenieure (VDI - German Engineers Society)
New Zealand Geothermal Association
Project Management Institute


German - intermediate level of reading and speech


Tramping/Mountaineering, Cycling, Swimming, Photography


New Zealander and German


Commercial Awareness

Technical Competency

Management of Teams

Outcome Focussed:

Personal Values and Attributes


since 07/2013

Verso Consulting Ltd., Wellington, New Zealand

Self employed consultant, offering project development and project management services for the energy and infrastructure industry.

April 2018 – ongoing: Top Energy / Ngawha Generation Ltd, Kerikeri. Engaged by principal to manage the Ngawha Geothermal Power Station Expansion Project, which includes a new 28 MW power plant (OEC4) and related steam field and drilling works.

September 2015 – October 2017: OnGas Ltd, Auckland. Engaged by principal to manage the contracting and construction of a green fields semi-automated 9kg LPG bottle refilling and refurbishment facility in Papakura. Multiple contracts based on NZS3910, FIDIC Yellow, and client terms.

October 2013 – June 2014 Contract role through Fitzroy Engineering Group Ltd. - Engineering Manager, Trans-Tasman Resources Ltd, Feasibility study of an offshore iron sand extraction project.

  • Oversaw the preliminary selection and layout of ship mounted iron sand processing, power generation, and desalination plant equipment
  • Developed engineering solutions for the integrated mining vessel with naval architects, process designers, and equipment vendors
02/2000 – 06/2013

Contact Energy Ltd., Wellington, New Zealand
Project Manager, Project Director, Relieving Generation Manager

Accountable for the development and delivery of power generation projects (natural gas, diesel, geothermal, and hydro).

  • Led and/or provided technical input to feasibility studies and resource consent (environmental permit) applications for new electricity generation opportunities
  • Undertook economic evaluation of the project business case including assessment of the project life cycle costs
  • Managed multiple stakeholders and resolve their conflicting drivers in order to deliver value to shareholders and manage project risks
  • Developed, negotiated, managed, and enforced the commercial and technical aspects of major supply and construction contracts, and appropriately apportioned risk between the parties
  • Selected and managed teams of professionals to deliver the required outcome
  • Reported on health and safety performance, progress, cost, and schedule

Instrumental in a number of significant projects:

  • Wairakei Investment Programme
    • Developed the initial business case and project outline for replacement of the Wairakei geothermal power station with a new station called Te Mihi in 2004. Others subsequently developed this project and secured Board approval for the NZ$ 750 million programme of works in early 2011. Appointed to the role of Project Director for the overall programme including the power station and steam field development from early 2011 through to mid 2012. This role included overseeing project managers who were delivering all aspects of the programme works (well drilling, steam field surface works, power station) and reporting on the overall programme cost, schedule, and safety performance to a project steering committee.
  • Otahuhu C Power Station – 1 x 400 MW gas fired combined cycle gas turbine (a brown fields project).
    • Managed a project to obtain resource consents for the development. Prepared key technical documentation for the Assessment of Environmental Effects. This included the preparation of evidence regarding the construction and operation of the proposed power station, review of evidence from others for the consent hearing and subsequent appeal, and presentation of evidence at the hearing. The consents were granted in September 2002.
  • Whirinaki Power Station – 3 x 55 MW diesel fired open cycle gas turbines (a brown fields project built on behalf of the New Zealand Government). Overall cost approx. NZ$ 150 million.
    • Contact’s Project Manager for the overall project and key interface with the Government’s representatives, all contractors and consultants, and Transpower (the grid owner).
  • Wairakei Binary Plant – 14 MW geothermal power plant (a brown fields project). Overall cost approx. NZ$ 45 million.
    • Led the development of the technical and commercial documentation for the EPC contract for the supply and construction of the power plant, and the preparation of the business case for the project up to the time of Board approval to proceed with the project.
    • The detailed design and construction phase was managed by others. The station was successfully commissioned in mid 2005 and met the targets set out in the business case.
  • Te Huka – 23.6 MW geothermal binary plant (Tauhara Stage 1 – Centennial Drive, a green fields project). Overall cost approx. NZ$ 100 million.
    Contact’s Project Manager for the overall project and key interface with all contractors, consultants, and Unison (the network owner). The project included well drilling, steam field surface works, power station, and network connection.
    • Led the development of the technical and commercial documentation for the EPC contract for the supply and construction of the power plant, and the preparation of the business case for approval by Contact’s Board.
    • Engaged consultants and contractors as required to undertake work outside the scope of the EPC contract.
    • Coordinated and managed work streams of approx 6 – 8 others within Contact to execute all aspects of the project, including modification of resource consents, network connection, water supply, steam field, and installation of remote control facilities at Contact’s Wairakei power station.
    • Completed in May 2010 on time, on budget, and to the required power station performance.
  • Tauhara Stage II Geothermal Development (power station up to 240 MW, including steam field, a green fields project).
    • Led the concept design and managed a number of internal and external parties to obtain resource consents for the project. Consents were granted through a Board of Enquiry process in early 2011.
    • This project won a number of industry awards for the specialists involved in the consenting process.
  • Refurbishment Projects:
    • Prepared applications for funding and managed design and construction contracts (with on-site management by others) of various projects including:
      1. Refurbishment of low level diversion gate at Roxburgh hydro station (NZ$ 2.5 million).
      2. Seismic Strengthening of Roxburgh hydro dam spillway structure (NZ$ 6 million).
      3. Refurbishment of 8 x 40 MW generators and turbines at Roxburgh (NZ$ 50 million).
      4. Refurbishment of two gas turbines and generators at Otahuhu A for voltage support service (NZ$ 1.5 million).
      5. Developed the business case, secured Board approval, and negotiated the main contract to upgrade the hydro power station control system (NZ$ 10 million).
  • Investigations and Studies:
    • Investment appraisal for various new generation options including combined cycle gas turbine, wind, hydro, cogeneration, and geothermal with presentation of results and recommendations to senior management team and/or Board.
    • Technical input for due diligence on potential power station acquisitions in Australia.
    • Led the preparation of technical and commercial proposals for two cogeneration plants, shortlisted for one in Australia.
    • As part of the early work on the Te Mihi development, lead the investigation and pilot trials of a biological treatment process to control hydrogen sulphide discharges from the Wairakei Power Station. The full scale plant was brought into operation in 2012.
    • Initiated Contact’s Clutha River hydro development study. Updated the scope and business case for known large hydro generation projects at Luggate, Queensbury, Beaumont, and Tuapeka. Identified preferred development options and reported the findings to management. This study was subsequently progressed further by others, but Contact chose not to proceed beyond the feasibility stage of the development.

Relieving Generation Manager – 6 month secondment to lead the day to day operations of a site with 570 MW of gas fired generation and some 40 staff

10/1998 – 01/2000

Contact Operations Australia Pty Ltd., Queensland, Australia
Project Manager – Oakey Power Project

Owner’s site based project manager for the construction of a 300 MW gas/diesel fired gas turbine power plant

  • Accountable for delivery of Owner’s works and management of power plant and grid connection contracts through to handover to client
  • Reported progress to Board, Client, Bankers, and Insurers
01/1994 – 09/1998

Tasman Pulp and Paper Co. Ltd., Kawarau, New Zealand Design Engineer, Project Engineer

Responsible for scoping, planning, and implementing production plant refurbishments and improvements in the pulp mill

  • Coordinated and prioritised activities of the engineering services provider
  • Provided technical support to a strategic study of outsourcing the site’s energy supply plant

11/1995 – 05/1996 Secondment to Malaysian Newsprint Industries, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Feasibility Study

  • Performed a preliminary selection of machinery and assembled a construction cost estimate for a green field newsprint manufacturing facility

07/1992 – 12/1993

Noell-KRC Umwelttechnik GmbH, Würzburg, Germany.
(now Babcock Noell GmbH, part of the Bilfinger Group)
Commissioning Manager, Belledune, Canada

Responsible for the on-site start up and commissioning activities of a flue gas desulphurisation plant including preparation of O&M manuals and operator training.

02/1991 – 06/1992

Tasman Pulp and Paper Co. Ltd., Kawarau, New Zealand
Design Engineer

Planning, budgeting, design, and project management of capital expenditure projects in the pulp mill and steam plant

12/1987 – 12/1990

Noell-KRC Umwelttechnik GmbH, Würzburg, Germany.
(now Babcock Noell GmbH, part of the Bilfinger Group)
Commissioning Engineer/Manager, Germany

On-site start up and commissioning activities for several flue gas desulphurisation and denitrification plants at coal-fired power stations in Germany

11/1985 – 08/1987

Beca Carter Hollings and Ferner, Auckland, New Zealand
Design Engineer

Design and specification preparation of HVAC systems for industrial and commercial buildings. Inspection of site works


14 Longmont Terrace
Churton Park, Wellington
New Zealand, 6037

Mob: +64 21 701 267