Streamlining the regulatory regime for pest control

This page has information on the Government's changes to streamline the regulatory regime for pest control, which follow public consultation in 2016.

About the changes

In 2016 the Government consulted on a proposal to standardise and simplify the regulatory regime for vertebrate toxic agents (VTAs) used to control mammalian pests such as stoats, possums and rats, as well as pest fish.

A majority of submissions were in favour of the proposal. A detailed report of the submissions will be published on this website shortly.

The new regulations come into force on 1 April 2017. They exempt users of three VTAs – sodium fluoroacetate (1080), brodifacoum and rotenone – from Resource Management Act (RMA) requirements for aerial or ground application. This means that such operations will not need resource consent, nor will they be managed through regional plan rules.

Importantly, the new regulations will not change the other controls that are in place to protect people and the environment when VTAs are used.

These changes follow a report published by the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment in June 2011, which recommended investigating ways to simplify and standardise how 1080 and other toxins for pest control are managed under the RMA and other legislation.

RMA requirements for pest control were found to duplicate 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 some instances. In addition, RMA controls were not providing additional protection to human health or the environment, beyond that already provided by other legislation.

The regulations will allow operations to be more timely and effective, thereby better protecting New Zealand’s flora and fauna from pests.

Requirements for public notification and the posting of signs prior to the use of 1080, brodifacoum or rotenone will be unaffected by these changes.

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  

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

Streamlining the regulatory regime for pest control - Summary of submissions

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

Predator Free 2050 [Department of Conservation website]