Streamlining the regulatory regime for pest control

This page has information on the Resource Management (Exemption) Regulations 2017 which streamline the use of three vertebrate toxic agents. It also has guidance on the regulations.

Link to the regulations

The regulations are effective from 1 April 2017.

About the regulations

Under the regulations users of three vertebrate toxic agents (VTAs) - used to control mammalian pests such as stoats, possums and rats, and pest fish - are exempt from Resource Management Act (RMA) requirements for aerial and ground applications.

The three VTAs are sodium fluoroacetate (1080), brodifacoum and rotenone.

The regulations reduce duplication in the regulatory regime for pest control, so that operations can be more efficiently planned and therefore better protect New Zealand’s flora and fauna from pests.

The regulations do not change other controls in place to protect people and the environment when VTAs are used. Requirements for public notification and the posting of signs before the use of 1080, brodifacoum and rotenone are unaffected by these regulations.


The Ministry for the Environment has produced a brief guidance document on the regulations. The guidance will help regional councils and pest control operators understand the impacts of the regulations, particularly on existing consents, plans, and future pest control operations.


In a 2011 report, the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment recommended investigating ways to simplify and standardise how 1080 and other toxins for pest control were managed under the RMA and other legislation.

The investigation found that RMA requirements for pest control were duplicating other controls, notably those in the Hazardous Substances and New Organisms Act 1996 and the Agricultural Compounds and Veterinary Medicines Act 1997. This duplication was contributing to unnecessary costs and delays in pest control operations, as well as operational errors. In addition, RMA controls were not providing protection to human health or the environment beyond that already provided by other legislation.

In 2016 the Government consulted on its proposal to standardise and simplify the regulatory regime for VTAs.

See Streamlining the regulatory regime for pest control consultation document (the consultation closed in May 2016)

The majority of submissions from  the consultation  were in favour of the proposal. 

See Streamlining the regulatory regime for pest control: Summary of submissions.

Find out more

Cabinet paper: Resource Management (Exemption) Regulations 2017 – Pest Control

Cabinet paper: Streamlining the regulatory regime for pest control – advice following consultation

Regulatory impact statement: Streamlining the regulatory regime for pest control  

Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment Report: Evaluating the use of 1080

Predator Free 2050 [Department of Conservation website]