The Government is proposing several specific changes to the RMA through the Resource Management Amendment Bill (the bill).
Purpose of the bill
The objectives of this bill are to:
- reduce complexity
- increase certainty
- restore public participation opportunities
- improve Resource Management Act 1991 processes.
This bill also supports the urgent need to improve freshwater management and outcomes, and respond to climate change in New Zealand.
It also addresses issues with:
- resource consenting
- Environment Court provisions within the RMA.
Where the bill is at
- The bill was introduced into the House and had its first reading in September 2019.
- The Environment Select Committee called for public submissions on the bill in September 2019. The submission period closed on 7 November 2019. There were 385 submissions. Oral hearings on submissions were held in Wellington and Auckland, including by teleconference. These concluded in February 2020.
- The Environment Select Committee has considered the public submissions and reported back its decisions.
- The bill as reported back includes:
- a number of technical changes to existing proposals, particularly the proposed freshwater planning process and EPA enforcement provisions
- some new proposed provisions. These include amendments to enable local decision-makers to consider climate change mitigation under the RMA from 31 December 2021.
The bill is on the Legislation website.
The Environment Select Committee’s report on the bill is on the New Zealand Parliament Pāremata Aotearoa website.
Information about the policy proposals in the bill
- Cabinet paper 1 – Proposed Resource Management Amendment Bill: Stage 1 of a resource management system review
- Appendix to the Cabinet paper: Proposed bill to amend the RMA – further policy detail on proposals (on Cabinet paper web page)
- Cabinet paper 2: Proposed Resource Management Amendment Bill: A specialised planning process for freshwater, and other outstanding policy decisions
- Cabinet paper 3 - Resource Management Amendment Bill - Approval for introduction
- Impact Summary: Proposed bill to amend the Resource Management Act 1991 (version 1)
- Updated Impact Summary: Proposed bill to amend the Resource Management Act 1991 (version 2)
- Impact Statement: A new planning process for freshwater
- Impact Summary: Additional proposals for proposed bill to amend the Resource Management Act 1991