This note is not part of the regulations, but is intended to indicate their general effect.
These regulations, which come into force on 28 February 2014, classify section 20 activities carried out for the purpose of exploration drilling for petroleum in the exclusive economic zone or in or on the continental shelf as non-notified activities under the Exclusive Economic Zone and Continental Shelf (Environmental Effects) Act 2012 (the principal Act), as amended by the Exclusive Economic Zone and Continental Shelf (Environmental Effects) Amendment Act 2013 (the 2013 amendment Act). An application for a marine consent for an activity described in regulation 5 is required by section 38(2)(b) of the principal Act to fully describe the proposal. The description of the proposal will need to demonstrate that the activity will be undertaken for the purpose of exploratory drilling for petroleum. The effect of these regulations is that an application for a marine consent for the activity is not to be publicly notified, provided that the condition in regulation 6 is complied with.
The condition in regulation 6 is that—
the geographical area covered by the application must be the same or part of the same geographical area covered by a permit or adjacent permits under the Crown Minerals Act 1991; or
the activity must be authorised by an existing privilege held by the applicant that is preserved by clause 12 of Schedule 1 of that Act.
Section 29D of the principal Act (as inserted by the 2013 amendment Act) empowers the making of regulations to describe any discretionary activity as non-notified or to provide that an application for a marine consent for the activity is not to be publicly notified. Under section 36 of the principal Act, an activity is a discretionary activity if regulations do not classify it as permitted, discretionary, or prohibited. Section 20 activities carried out for the purpose of exploration drilling for petroleum are discretionary activities by default because they have not been formally classified in that way.
Applications for a marine consent for a non-notifiable activity are dealt with by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) under sections 44A and 44B of the principal Act (as inserted by the 2013 amendment Act). Section 44A requires the EPA to serve a copy of the application on iwi authorities, customary marine title groups, and protected customary rights groups. Section 44B enables the EPA to conduct a hearing on the application.
Date of notification in Gazette: 27 February 2014.
These regulations are administered by the Ministry for the Environment.