New Zealand is using less non-renewable energy according to a government report.
But a question mark hangs over the pace of future progress, with resource consent for some long-planned wind farms soon to expire.
Renewable energy sources such as hydro, wind and geothermal power plants accounted for 84 per cent of the country's electricity generation in the year to the end of December, according to an annual report produced by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE).
That was up from 82 per cent in 2017 and thanks in part to record output from geothermal plants and increases in home-solar generation.
That also meant renewable energy accounted for 40 per cent of the country's total energy consumption for the first time.
Much of the remaining 60 per cent is accounted for by petrol and jet fuel used for transport, and coal and gas used in industrial processes, for example by NZ Steel and Fonterra.
Energy Minister Megan Woods said more than $650 million had been committed to new renewable generation "for the coming year".
Enough wind farms have received resource consent to add the equivalent of 45 per cent of the country's current hydro-electric capacity, or 1800 megawatts, to the electricity supply.
"That means we are well placed for growth in renewable generation in the years ahead," Woods said.
However, it appears possible that consents for most of that extra wind capacity will lapse before those wind farms are built.
Almost half of the 1800MW of consented wind energy is accounted for by a massive 850MW wind farm that Genesis Energy has permission to build by 2023 at Castle Hill in the Wairarapa.
Genesis – which is the operator of the coal and gas-fired Huntly power station – has not provided an update on that potential development since 2013 and spokeswoman Emma-Kate Greer said in July that it had "no immediate construction plans".
If the wind farm was developed in future, Genesis' existing consents would need to be altered to take advantage of improvements in wind generation in the past five years, Greer said.
Another 130MW is accounted for by Meridian Energy's proposed Central Wind farm near Ruapehu.
Consent for that development, which was received in 2008, is due to expire in January and construction has not yet started.
Meridian says the development may proceed when "market conditions are right".
The construction of a number of the other wind farms within their consented periods appears uncertain.
Contact Energy let consent for a massive 540MW wind farm on the Waikato Coast lapse, spokesman Andrew Austin confirmed in August, but is pressing ahead with investment in other renewables.
Wind would play a big role in New Zealand's energy future, but Contact believed geothermal energy was "the best first step" in further decarbonising electricity generation "as it is low cost and not weather dependent", he said then.
Woods has set a goal of achieving 100 per cent renewable electricity by 2035, though some in the industry remain sceptical.
She intends to publish a discussion paper on renewable energy strategy later this year that will be designed to set a path to boosting renewable generation and reducing the use of fossil fuels in industrial applications.
Genesis now plans to stop burning coal at Huntly by 2030, but chief executive Marc England said in May that was a goal and not a promise. chief executive Marc England said in May that was a goal and not a promise.