The electrification of lights after the Second World War meant that jobs were disestablished as keepers resigned or retired. As light and weather-reporting functions were automated from the late 1970s, there were redundancies, and by 1991 there were no resident lighthouse keepers in New Zealand. A further technical development has been the use of solar panels to provide electricity. The solar panels on the side of Cape Rēinga’s lighthouse power the light. This is one of the 70 lights in the country that are powered by the sun.
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Maritime Safety Authority
Photograph by Jim Foye
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