Resource Management Act 1991

  • not the latest version

Reprint as at 8 December 2009

Resource Management Act 1991

Public Act1991 No 69
Date of assent22 July 1991
Commencementsee section 1(2)


Changes authorised by section 17C of the Acts and Regulations Publication Act 1989 have been made in this reprint.

A general outline of these changes is set out in the notes at the end of this reprint, together with other explanatory material about this reprint.

This Act is administered by the Ministry for the Environment.




Coastal marine area

River and lake beds




Adverse effects

Recognised customary activities


Effect of certain changes to plans


Certain existing lawful activities allowed

Miscellaneous provisions

Functions, powers, and duties of Ministers

Functions, powers, and duties of local authorities

Duties of local authorities and applicants

Powers and duties of local authorities and other public authorities

Waivers and extension of time limits

Enforcement officers

Powers and duties in relation to hearings


National environmental standards

National policy statements

New Zealand coastal policy statements

Regional policy statements

Regional plans

Rules relating to discharge of greenhouse gases

District plans

Additional provisions for regional rules and district rules

Miscellaneous provisions

Plan must not allow activity that prevents recognised customary activities

Legal effect of rules

Streamlining decision-making on resource consents

Application for resource consent

Further information

Notification of applications


Public notification and limited notification of applications

Submissions on applications

Pre-hearing meetings and mediation



Decisions on applications relating to discharge of greenhouse gases

Decisions on applications relating to non-aquaculture activities

Restricted coastal activities


Nature of resource consent

Duration of consent

Review of consent conditions by consent authority

Transfer of consents

Certificates of compliance or existing use

Decisions on proposals of national significance


Matter lodged with local authority

Matter lodged with EPA

General provisions for matter lodged with local authority or EPA

How matter processed if direction made to refer matter to board of inquiry or court

Matter decided by board of inquiry

Matter decided by Environment Court


Process after decision of board of inquiry or court on certain matters

Minister makes direction to refer matter to local authority

Minister's powers to intervene in matter

Process if related matter already subject to direction to refer to board of inquiry or court

Costs of processes under this Part

Certain coastal permits continued

Aquaculture management areas and occupation of coastal marine area

Allocation of space in coastal marine area

Allocation by offer of authorisations


Heritage orders

Streamlining decision-making on designations and heritage orders

Approval and deposit of survey plans

Esplanade reserves

Vesting of roads and reserves

Conditions as to amalgamation of land

Conditions as to easements

Company leases and cross leases



Environment Judges and alternate Environment Judges

Environment Commissioners and Deputy Environment Commissioners

Removal and resignation of members

Special advisors

Officers of court

Miscellaneous provisions relating to court

Constitution of court

Conferences and additional dispute resolution

Procedure and powers

Appeals, inquiries, and other proceedings before Environment Court

Court's powers in regard to plans and policy statements

Decisions of Environment Court

Appeals from Environment Court decisions


Enforcement orders

Abatement notices

Excessive noise

Water shortage

Emergency works

Powers of entry and search

Return of property


Infringement offences

344 Interpretation [Repealed]

351 Regulations [Repealed]

Rights of objection

Transitional regional plans

Transitional regional coastal plans

Transitional district plans

Provisions relating to all plans

Transitional notices, directions, etc

Transitional resource consents

Subdivision and development

Current mining privileges relating to water

Existing uses

Miscellaneous provisions

Resource Management Amendment Act 2003

Resource Management (Energy and Climate Change) Amendment Act 2004

Resource Management (Foreshore and Seabed) Amendment Act 2004

Aquaculture Reform (Repeals and Transitional Provisions) Act 2004

Resource Management Amendment Act 2005

Resource Management (Simplifying and Streamlining) Amendment Act 2009

Reprint notes

An Act to restate and reform the law relating to the use of land, air, and water