Natasha Hood

Senior Associate Pouarataki Pāhake

An experienced energy, infrastructure, and construction projects lawyer, Natasha co-leads the Energy practice.

Natasha has particular expertise in the renewable energy sector, including advising on wind, solar, and hydrogen projects, power purchase agreements (PPAs), and energy regulation. Drawing on her broad major project experience, she assists clients with all construction and delivery related agreements, including EPC contracts, early contractor involvement (ECI) contracts, consultancy agreements, equipment supply agreements, operation and maintenance (O&M) agreements, and Public Private Partnerships (PPPs). She also works closely with our finance team on project finance related matters.

Both public and private sector clients (including principals, contractors, and lenders) seek Natasha’s support to successfully deliver on significant construction and infrastructure projects. As well as drafting and negotiating project contracts, she assists her clients to develop procurement strategies and throughout their tender processes. She also helps with administration of the project contracts throughout the delivery phase. Successful delivery of major projects requires the right advice at the right time. A skilled communicator, Natasha often acts as a central point of contact to bring together the various specialist legal components required.

In addition to her infrastructure and construction background, Natasha has general corporate and commercial legal experience. She has advised on a broad variety of commercial transactions including joint venture agreements, private mergers and acquisitions (M&A), port and rail infrastructure agreements, and commodity sale and purchase agreements.

Prior to joining MinterEllisonRuddWatts, Natasha was part of the corporate team at Herbert Smith Freehills in Australia, predominantly advising clients in the energy and resources sector. She also spent five years at global gold mining leader, Newmont Mining Corporation, initially on site as a geologist at a mining operation and subsequently as in house legal counsel.

Her on the ground experience working as part of an operations team gives Natasha a unique perspective on the interplay between the legal, commercial, and technical facets to a project. To each project, she brings a focus on communication, commerciality, and the importance of understanding her client’s business.

Career highlights

Advising Mercury in relation to the delivery of the Turitea Wind Farm project, which is New Zealand’s largest wind farm, in particular on matters relating to the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract.

Advising an international investment and asset development company on its 1GW portfolio of solar PV projects as part of its longer-term strategic interest in solar opportunities in New Zealand. Including advising on the interface between the various delivery strategies and contracts to ensure that interface risks are identified, mitigated, and managed.

Advising the mezzanine financier in respect of its financing of the development and construction of, initially, five solar generation facilities at five separate site locations in the North Island, on aspects related to material project contracts.

Advising the Major Electricity Users’ Group (MEUG) on the drafting and negotiation of a number of power purchase agreements (PPAs), including in respect of geothermal, wind, and solar electricity generation projects.

Advising Wellington Gateway Partnership, the contractor engaged by Waka Kotahi - New Zealand Transport Agency to construct, operate, and maintain the Transmission Gully motorway, on various aspects of the project delivery and documentation.

Advising Channel Infrastructure in relation to regulatory changes to the Transmission Pricing Methodology (TPM) and Channel Infrastructure’s contractual arrangements for electricity supply and distribution line services.

Advising Tainui Group on the drafting and negotiation of consultancy, early contractor involvement, and design and construction contracts for its Ruakura Superhub inland port project.

  • Member, Society of Construction Law New Zealand
  • Member, Infrastructure New Zealand
  • Member, New Zealand Wind Energy Association
  • Member, New Zealand Hydrogen Council
Achievements and recognition
  • Rising Star, Project development, IFLR1000
  • Band 1 team, Energy & Natural Resources, Chambers Asia-Pacific
  • Band 1 team, Construction, Chambers Asia-Pacific
  • Tier 1 team, Construction, The Legal 500 Asia-Pacific