Environment Act 1986
The Environment Act 1986 established the Ministry for the Environment
and the Office of the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment.
The Commissioner is an officer of Parliament appointed for a five-year
term to provide an independent check on the system of environmental
management and the performance of public authorities on environmental
The functions of the Ministry for the Environment, as set out in the
Environment Act 1986, are:
- To advise the Minister on all aspects of environmental administration,
- management policies for natural and physical resources and
ecosystems to meet the objectives of the Environment Act 1986
- significant environmental impacts of public or private sector
proposals, particularly those that are inadequately covered
by existing legislative or other environmental assessment requirements
- ensuring effective provision is made for public participation
in environmental planning and policy formulation, particularly
at the regional and local level.
- To obtain information, and to conduct and supervise research,
so it may advise the Government on environmental policies.
- To provide the Government, its agencies, and other public authorities
with advice on:
- the application, operation, and effectiveness of the Acts specified
in the Schedule to the Environment Act 1986 in relation to the
achievement of the objectives of the Act
- procedures for the assessment and monitoring of environmental
- pollution control and the co-ordination of the management of
pollutants in the environment
- the identification and likelihood of natural hazards and the
reduction of the effects of natural hazards
- the control of hazardous substances, including the management
of the manufacture, storage, transport, and disposal of hazardous
- To facilitate and encourage the resolution of conflict in relation
to policies and proposals which may affect the environment.
- To provide and disseminate information and services to promote
environmental policies, including environmental education and effective
public participation in environmental planning.
- Generally to provide advice on matters relating to the environment.
- To carry out functions specified under any other enactment (this
includes for example the Ministry's functions under the RMA).
Full text of the Environment Act 1986 (NZ Legislation website).
Last updated: 29 September 2008