How projects can attain nationally significant proposal status

This page has information on nationally significant proposals including what they are and where to find further information on the process.

What they are 

Nationally significant proposals are exceptionally large and complex proposals with regional or national impacts. Decisions on these are made by a Board of Inquiry or the Environment Court.

How projects qualify

Currently there are three ways that a project can attain nationally significant proposal (NSP) status.

  • If an application has been lodged with a local authority,
    • the Minister may make a direction that it is an NSP on their own initiative (and ‘call it in’), or
    • the authority may request that the Minister makes a direction that it is an NSP.
  • The applicant may lodge the proposal directly with the Environment Protection Authority (EPA), who will then make a recommendation to the Minister whether to make a direction on its NSP status.

Find out more

The EPA administers the NSP process. For more information see RMA proposals [Environment Protection Authority website].