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Report an environmental incident

Report an environmental incident

Updated 27 May 2015 9:54am

To report an environmental incident, phone the environment hotline on 0800 496 734. While you'll need to provide your name, address and phone number, your details are confidential and won't be released to other parties.

What kind of incidents do we want to know about?

We want to know about all environmental incidents which involve the contamination of land, water; air and the coastal marine area. The 24-hour environmental protection duty officer will respond to incidents involving:

  • Water pollution (discharges to streams, rivers, lakes, aquifers and the coastal marine area)
  • Land pollution (dumping and spillage of materials which will contaminate land)
  • Air pollution (dust, smells/odours, smoke from outdoor fires where hazardous materials (including plastic, treated timber and metal etc) are being burnt)
  • Taking water (groundwater (boreholes), surface water and the drainage of wetlands)
  • River works (channel/river mouth cutting, vegetation removal, diversions, excavations, gravel extractions, deposition and disturbance)
  • Earthworks (large scale vegetation clearance, earth moving, tracking, cut and fill etc)
  • Buildings and structures in rivers/stream and the coastal marine area (construction, demolition, maintenance etc)
  • Noise originating from the coastal marine area (such as from boats and ships etc)
  • Animals in rivers/streams and the coastal marine area (discharges, disturbance, carcases etc)
  • Hazardous substances (discharges into water or land)

We will investigate and assess compliance of these types of incidents with the Resource Management Act 1991, rules in the regional plans and existing resource consents.

What we don't respond to (as these are dealt with under different legislation administered by other authorities)

  • Noise originating from land (house and traffic)
  • Contamination of the urban drinking water supply
  • Air pollution (i.e. smoke) from domestic dwellings/houses
  • Incidents involving health effects to the public
  • Air pollution or discharges to land from land based vehicle or transport sources
  • Litter

How we respond

We will be able to attend most incidents within one hour of being notified, unless we are delayed by traffic, or attending another incident. For some known odour sources there is a pre-determined threshold of complaints before a duty officer is able to investigate.

If there is a clear and confirmed breach of a resource consent, a regional rule or the Resource Management Act 1991, we can take enforcement action against the offenders. During the investigation the Environmental Protection officer will collect evidence if any enforcement action is considered likely. Find out more about our enforcement process.

Sediment in stormwater drain
Sediment blocking stormwater drain as a result of earthworks