Guidelines that address contaminants from specific industries or activities

The Ministry for the Environment has produced guidelines to help assess and manage hazardous substances commonly associated with timber treatment, gas works, petroleum hydrocarbon, and former sheep dip sites.


The guidance focuses on these industries and activities as they are commonly associated with contaminated land in New Zealand.

While these guidelines have been written specifically for these industries and activities, they contain useful generic guidance, including soil guideline values helpful for assessing land containing contaminants in common.

Other relevant guidelines

A series of guidelines covering reporting, application of environmental guideline values, risk screening classification and information management, and investigation and analysis.

The following Ministry guidelines are used to assess the effects of hazardous substances on air, surface water and sediment:

Other government departments have also produced guidance related to managing the effects of contaminated land

Environmental Case Management of Lead Exposed Persons: Guidelines for Public Health Services [Ministry of the Health website]
These guidelines provide practical advice for the investigation and environmental case management of people with elevated levels of lead, and are particularly aimed at risks arising from lead-based paint. The guidelines include recommendations for protecting children from lead in soil, and are principally taken from United States guidance. Guidance is also provided on dust and soil-sampling techniques for residential situations.

Workplace Exposure Standards [Occupational Safety and Health website]
This guideline assigns standards for concentrations in air for approximately 700 substances. The Workplace Exposure Standards (WES) are guidelines for those involved in occupational health practice. Although the WES are called ‘standards’, they do not have the force of regulation that national environmental standards and food standards have.