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
Resource Management (Exemption) Regulations 2017 [New Zealand Legislation website]
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.
A minor amendment to the regulations has been made to clarify that aerial discharge of brodifacoum in predator-proof sanctuaries is exempted from RMA requirements. This is consistent with the policy intent of the regulations to reduce duplication in the regulatory regime for pest control, as aerial brodifacoum use is already regulated by the Hazardous Substances and New Organisms Act 1996 (HSNO) and the Agricultural Compounds and Veterinary Medicines Act 1997 (ACVM).
The ACVM regulates the aerial use of brodifacoum within predator-proof sanctuaries through the:
- Code of practice: Aerial and hand broadcast application of pestoff® rodent bait 20R for the intended eradication of rodents from specified areas of New Zealand (PDF, 368 KB) [Pestoff website]
This code of practice regulates potential discharge of brodifacoum to water.
1.10 requires that waterways screen out whole baits that land in waterways during the operation, to ensure they are not carried out of the sanctuary.
2.10 also requires that baits do not enter water supply intakes.
The HSNO regulates aircraft conducting aerial pest control operations from flying over waterways and other sensitive areas at 3.6 of the:
- AIRCARE™ Code of practice for the aerial application of vertebrate toxic agents (PDF, 1.09 MB) [Aviation New Zealand website]
Further information on the amendment to the regulations can be found in the:
The amendment is effective from 2 June 2017.
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.
Find out more
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]