Preparing the assessment of environment effects (AEE)

Every application for a resource consent must include an assessment of environmental effects. 793  The detail required for the assessment will depend on the scale and significance of the potential effects. If your proposal is likely to have significant effects, or if your proposed activity is non-complying, you may need to engage a resource management professional to help prepare the AEE as well as other experts to deal with specific effects. As well as considering environmental effects more generally, the AEE should specifically address any assessment criteria identified in the relevant plan and any concerns raised by affected parties.

An AEE should include the following information: 794

  • A description of the proposal;
  • A description of any possible alternative locations or methods, where an activity will result in significant adverse effects;
  • An assessment of the actual or potential effects on the environment of the proposed activity;
  • An assessment of any risks to the environment of an activity which includes the use of hazardous substances and installations;
  • Where an activity includes the discharge of any contaminant, a description of the nature of the discharge, the sensitivity of the receiving environment, and possible alternative methods;
  • A description of the mitigation measures to be undertaken;
  • Identification of persons interested in or affected by the proposal, consultation undertaken if any, and response to the views of those consulted;
  • How monitoring will be carried out if required and by whom; and
  • Where a protected customary right is likely to be adversely affected by the proposed activity, the AEE must include a description of possible alternative locations or methods for the proposed activity unless written approval is given by the protected customary rights group. 795

The size and comprehensiveness of an AEE should be proportional to the potential effects of the proposed activity. It needs to be sufficient to enable the consent authority to evaluate the potential effects, and interested and affected parties to identify how they will be affected.

An AEE should address the following matters: 796

  • Any effect on those in the neighbourhood and, where relevant the wider community, including any socio-economic and cultural effects;
  • Any physical effect on a locality, including any landscape and visual effects
  • Any effect on ecosystems, including effects on plants or animals and any physical disturbance of habitats in the vicinity;
  • Any effect on natural and physical resources having aesthetic, recreational, scientific, historical, spiritual, or cultural, or other special value for present or future generations;
  • Any discharge of contaminants into the environment, including any unreasonable emission of noise, and options for the treatment and disposal of contaminants; and
  • Any risk to the neighbourhood, the wider community, or the environment through natural hazards or the use of hazardous substances or hazardous installations.
  1. Section 88 Resource Management Act 1991

  2. Clause 6, Schedule 4, RMA

  3. Clause 1A Schedule 4

  4. Clause 7, Schedule 4, RMA

Last updated at 9:18AM on January 5, 2018