Latest Updates

RMA Reforms - Section 8 the Treaty Clause

Introduction The terms of reference for the review of the Resource Management Act 1991 (RMA) included ensuring Maori have an effective role in the resource management system consistent with the principles of the Treaty of Waitangi – Te Tiriti o Waitangi (Te Tiriti). Further reference terms...

Freshwater Reform - Where are we going and how will we get there?

Introduction Two major national direction documents intended to lay the foundation for restoration of our waterways have been released by the Government. The National Policy Statement for Freshwater Management 2020 (NPS-FM) and the Resource Management (National Environmental Standards for...

Resource Management Review Panel Report

Introduction The Resource Management Review Panel (Panel) chaired by Mr Tony Randerson Q.C. has released its report on resource management reform. It recommends significant and wide ranging changes to our current resource management law and processes. Before releasing its report the Panel...

New National Policy Statement paves the way for more affordable housing

Introduction The newest tranche of RMA national direction seeks to ensure that sufficient land is freed up for urban development when required. It enables urban growth (both up and out) and provides for well-functioning, liveable cities that meet the housing demand of our growing communities. The...

New Infrastructure Funding Legislation Intended to Accelerate Housing

Introduction The Infrastructure Funding and Financing Bill (the Bill) is expected to be passed shortly, with the Select Committee report on the Bill having been recently released. Significant infrastructure investment is needed to address housing issues and keep up with development demand in high...

RMA amended to allow consideration of climate change mitigation

The Resource Management Amendment Act 2020 (RMAA) was given royal assent on 30 June 2020. One of the biggest changes is that the RMAA aligns the RMA and the Climate Change Response (Zero Carbon) Amendment Act 2019 (Zero Carbon Act) by requiring RMA decision-makers to consider climate change...

Urban Development Bill Gives Significant Powers to Kãinga Ora

Introduction  The Urban Development Bill was introduced as part of a number of initiatives undertaken by the Government to remove what it saw as impediments to progress urban development within New Zealand. One of those initiatives was the enactment of the Kãinga Ora – Homes and...

Freshwater Reforms to Cause Splash for the Forestry Sector

Introduction The Government’s recently announced freshwater package introduces national direction for sediment management, which potentially has significant implications for the plantation forestry sector. On 28 May 2020 the Government released its decisions on the national direction for...

Freshwater Change - What will it take?

Introduction Access to clean freshwater is critical for the existence and advancement of our people in all our communities throughout New Zealand. Better looking after one of our key water resources is not new. It is an old and long, but uncompleted story. The use and availability of clean...

Planned Retreat from Areas with Unacceptable Risk of Natural Hazards

Introduction Severe natural hazard events and likely climate change impacts have led to ‘planned retreat’, as a risk reduction approach, becoming increasingly more important and topical in New Zealand. A recent decision of independent commissioners (the Commissioners) regarding two...