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  Council » Policies and Plans » Rules and regulation » Waikato Regional Plan » Waikato Regional Plan (online version) » Glossary of Terms

Glossary of Terms


Terms marked * are defined by the Resource Management Act, 1991. The RMA definition at the date of public notification of this Plan is set out for information only. Users should refer to the latest version of the RMA.

Terms marked # differ to definitions in the National Environmental Standard for Plantation Forestry Regulations 2017 (NESPF)(external link). Users should refer to the NESPF for the definition of these terms in relation to plantation forestry activities]

Terms marked ° are defined in the Waikato Regional Policy Statement, 1996. Unless a direct source is specified in a footnote, all other terms have been developed specifically for the purposes of this Plan. 

Abbreviations and Symbols:

BOD Biological Oxygen Demand
BPO Best Practicable Option
CMA Coastal Marine Area
CRI Crown Research Institute
DoC Department of Conservation
GA General Authorisation
HSNO Hazardous Substances and New Organisms Act
MFE Ministry for the Environment
µg/m3 Micrograms per cubic metre
mg/kg Milligram per kilogram
mg/m3 Milligrams per cubic metre
MHWS Mean high water springs
MSA Maritime Safety Authority
OECD Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development
OSH Occupational Safety and Health
pH Degree of acidity/alkalinity
RAAQG Regional Ambient Air Quality Guidelines
RCP Regional Coastal Plan
RLTS Regional Land Transport Strategy
RMA Resource Management Act
RPS Resource Policy Statement
RPMS Regional Pest Management Strategy
s Section of statue such as the RMA
TRP Transitional Regional Plan
TSP Total suspended particulate
WHO World Health Organisation

Accelerated erosion°: Erosion that is caused or accelerated by human activity.

Acid drainage: A process that occurs when sulphide minerals undergo oxidation (due to the presence of oxygen and water). The process may be catalysed by bacteria and may result in both ground and surface water becoming contaminated due to either the resultant low pH or by mobilisation of metals (which occur naturally in association with the sulphide minerals).

Activity area: For the purposes of rules in Chapter 5.1 ‘activity area’ is defined as any particular area of land on which an activity is being or is to be undertaken. For the sake of clarity there may be more than one “activity” area on a site.

Agrichemical: Any substance, whether inorganic or organic, human-made or naturally occurring, modified or in its original state, that is used in agriculture, horticulture or related activity, to eradicate, modify or control flora and fauna. For the purpose of this Plan, agrichemicals do not include fertilisers, fumigants*, vertebrate pest control products and oral nutrition.

Agriculture:   For the purposes of Chapters 3.3 and 3.4 means the raising of crops and livestock and includes pastoral farming, arable farming, and horticulture.

Ahi kaa°: Literally, keeping the fires burning on the land. Refers to the way in which the rights to occupy land and use resources are kept alive.

Ambient air quality: The quality of air outside buildings and structures. It does not refer to indoor air quality, air quality in the workplace, or to contaminated air quality, as it is discharged from a source.

Amenity values*: Those natural or physical qualities and characteristics of an area that contribute to people’s appreciation of its pleasantness, aesthetic coherence, and cultural and recreational attributes.

Annual exceedance probability: The probability that an event of a particular magnitude will be exceeded in any given 12 month period.

Aquifer: A body of permeable rock that is capable of storing significant quantities of water, is underlain by impermeable material, and through which ground water moves1.

Artificial lake: A constructed body of freshwater that is entirely surrounded by land and which is not on the alignment of a river or stream and has no natural inflows or headwaters.

Artificial watercourse: A watercourse that contains no natural portions from its confluence with a river or stream to its headwaters and includes irrigation canals, water supply races, canals for the supply of water for electricity power generation and farm drainage canals.

Authorised water take: Includes all takes of water provided for by either a resource consent or meet the requirements of s124 of the RMA or a permitted activity rule in this plan or as permitted by s14(3)(b) of the RMA.

Background levels: With respect to contaminated land and hazardous contaminants in soil, the ambient levels of a contaminant in soil or water on nearby land that has not been subject to any discharge of the contaminant.


  1. In relation to any river:
    1. for the purpose of esplanade reserves, esplanade strips, and subdivision, the space of land which the waters of the river cover at is annual fullest flow without overtopping its banks:
    2. in all other cases, the space of land which the waters of the river cover at its fullest flow without overtopping its banks; and
  2. In relation to any lake, except a lake controlled by artificial means:
    1. for the purposes of esplanade reserves, esplanade strips, and subdivision, the space of land which the waters of the lake cover at its annual highest level without exceeding its margin
    2. in all other cases, the space of land which the waters of the lake cover at its highest level without exceeding its margin; and
  3. In relation to any lake controlled by artificial means, the space of land which the waters of the lake cover at its maximum permitted operating level; and
  4. In relation to the sea, the submarine areas covered by the internal waters and the territorial sea.

The following is included for guidance only.

diagram of a river bed


Best practicable option*: In relation to a discharge of a contaminant or an emission of noise, means the best method for preventing or minimising the adverse effects on the environment having regard, among other things, to:

  1. The nature of the discharge or the emission and the sensitivity of the receiving environment to adverse effects; and
  2. The financial implications, and the effects on the environment, of that option when compared with other options; and
  3. The current state of technical knowledge and the likelihood that the option can be successfully applied.

Bioaccumulate2: To accumulate within the tissue of living organisms.

Biodiversity°: Means the variability among living organisms from all sources including, inter alia, terrestrial, marine and other aquatic ecosytems and the ecological complexes of which they are part; this includes diversity within species, between species and of ecosystems.

Biogas3: The mixture of gases, produced by anaerobic microbial decomposition of organic matter, that principally comprises methane and carbon dioxide together with lesser amounts of hydrogen sulphur, water vapour or other gases.

Biosolids: Processed sludges and liquids from industrial and trade premises that are suitable for reuse as soil conditioners or fertiliser substitutes.

Black disk horizontal visibility: The range in water at which the image of a black disk, viewed horizontally, is judged to be extinguished.

Bridge: A structure carrying a transport route such as a road, path, or railway, across a stream, ravine, road, railway etc.

Carcinogen: Any substance capable of causing cancer. Carcinogenesis has a corresponding meaning.

Care groups: Community groups that are formed to address environmental issues in a specific area.

Catchment: An area of land that provides water to a stream, river, lake or estuary.

Cave: A natural cavity, fissure or canyon in a rock large enough to be entered by a human and which acts as a conduit for water flow, seepage water, or ground water between input points such as stream sinks, and output points such as springs or seeps.

Certified Nutrient Management Advisors: A person who is registered with the Council and who holds a qualification from a tertiary education institution that provides knowledge and skills required to achieve a high standard of sustainable nutrient management in common New Zealand agroecosystems, including Dairying, Sheep and Beef, Cropping and Horticulture. The qualification must cover the following topics:

Soil patterns, land use and climate
Nutrients and nutrient cycles
Diagnostics: soil and plant testing
Nutrient transfer to the aquatic environment
Best management practices for protecting the aquatic environment
Issues with contaminants in fertilisers and by-products
Determination of nutrient requirements
Sustainable Nutrient Management
Complying with the Code of Practice for Fertiliser Use
Use and familiarity with the OVERSEERTM Model
The regulatory requirements for nutrient management in the Waikato Regional Plan, including knowledge of the rules that apply in the Lake Taupo Catchment.
Practical experience in the preparation of nutrient management plans

For the avoidance of doubt, a person who has both a Certificate of Completion in Sustainable Nutrient Management in New Zealand Agriculture and a Certificate of Completion in Advanced Sustainable Nutrient Management from Massey University satisfies these requirements.

Channel training structure: A structure within the bed of a river that is designed to maintain the bed of the channel flow in a particular location or width.

Cleanfill: Material that when discharged to the environment will have no adverse effect on people or the environment. This includes natural materials such as clay, soil and rock and other inert materials such as concrete and brick, or mixtures of any of the above.

Cleanfill excludes for example:

  1. material that has combustible, putrescible or degradable components,
  2. materials likely to create leachate by means of biological or chemical breakdown
  3. any products or materials derived from hazardous waste treatment, hazardous waste stabilisation or hazardous waste disposal practices,
  4. materials such as medical and veterinary waste, asbestos or radioactive substances that may present a risk to human health,
  5. soils or other materials contaminated with hazardous substances or pathogens
  6. hazardous substances.

Climate change: Means a change of climate that is attributed directly or indirectly to human activity that alters the composition of the global atmosphere and that is in addition to natural climate variability observed over comparable time periods.

Coastal environment°: An environment in which the coast is a significant element or part, and includes the coastal marine area.

Coastal marina area*: That area of the foreshore, seabed, and coastal water, and the air space above the water:

  1. of which the seaward boundary is the outer limits of the territorial sea
  2. of which the landward boundary is the line of mean high water springs, except that where that line crosses a river, the landward boundary at that point shall be whichever is the lesser of:
    1. one kilometre upstream from the mouth of the river, or
    2. the point upstream that is calculated by multiplying the width of the river mouth by five.

Co-Management: Requires a commitment to working in partnership, and in a spirit of collaboration. The successful implementation of co-management, and of the arrangements proposed under the co-management framework, require a new approach to management of the Waikato River. Accordingly, co-management includes;

  1. A collaborative approach that reflects partnership between the Waikato Regional Council and Waikato River Iwi;
  2. The highest level of good faith engagement;
  3. Consensus decision-making as a general rule;

while having regard to the statutory frameworks and the mana whakahaere of all Waikato River Iwi, including Raukawa, Waikato Tainui, Ngati Maniapoto, Ngati Tuwharetoa and Te Arawa River Iwi.

Composting: Means the manufacture of stable product suitable for use as a soil conditioner or fertiliser from the decomposition of organic matter. Compost has a corresponding meaning.

Contact re-entry time4: In relation to Chapter 6.2 of this Plan, ‘contact re-entry time’ is the minimum time required to elapse after application of agrichemicals before unprotected re-entry can take place into a treated area where skin contact with a treated surface is likely to take place. This includes operations of land thinning, hand pruning, hand weeding and walking on any spray surfaces, for whatever reason, without adequate foot protection.

Contaminant*: Includes any substance (including gases, liquids, solids, and microorganisms) or energy (excluding noise) or heat, that either by itself or in combination with the same, similar, or other substances, energy or heat:

  1. when discharged into water, changes or is likely to change the physical, chemical, or biological condition of water, or
  2. when discharged onto or into land or into air, changes or is likely to change the physical, chemical, or biological condition of the land or air onto or into which it is discharged.

Contaminated land5: Means land of 1 of the following kinds:

  1. if there is an applicable national environmental standard on contaminants in soil, the land is more contaminated than the standard allows; or
  2. if there is no applicable national environmental standard on contaminants in soil, the land has a hazardous substance in or on it that-
    1. has significant adverse effects on the environment; or
    2. is reasonably likely to have significant adverse effects on the environment.

Contractor: In relation to Chapter 6.2 of this Plan ‘contractor’ means any person or organisation who, by agreement with the owner, occupier, or manager of any land, discharges any agrichemical to that land for hire or reward, and is not otherwise an employee of that owner, occupier or manager.

Controlled activity*: Means an activity which:

  1. is provided for, as a controlled activity, by a rule in a plan or proposed plan; and
  2. complies with standards and terms specified in a plan or proposed plan for such activities; and
  3. is assessed according to matters the consent authority has reserved control over in the plan or proposed plan; and
  4. is allowed only if a resource consent is obtained in respect of that activity.

Combustion process: A process in which there is a chemical union of oxygen and another chemical accompanied by the emission of light and/or heat.

Culturally significant feature: See Significant Geothermal Features

Culvert#: Channel or conduit carrying water across or under a road, canal etc.

Desirable species: Includes:

  1. any native or introduced non-invasive plant species planted for food or erosion control; and
  2. any species traditionally used as food or for other purposes by tangata whenua; and
  3. any native or introduced plant or animal species which contributes to the natural character of the river or lake.
  4. any species which do not cause adverse effects on the environment or on existing resource use activities or physical resources, and which are not identified in the Waikato Regional Pest Management Strategy.

Discharge*: Includes emit, deposit, and allow to escape.

Discretionary activity*: Means an activity which:

  1. is provided for, as a discretionary activity, by a rule in a plan or proposed plan; and
  2. is allowed only if a resource consent is obtained in respect of that activity; and
  3. may have standards and terms specified in a plan or proposed plan; and
  4. in respect of which the consent authority may restrict the exercise of its discretion to those matters specified in a plan or proposed plan for that activity.

Dispersion model: A modelling procedure used to predict ground level concentrations of contaminants discharged into air.

Doline: A closed depression or hollow in the surface of karst terrain.

Domestic or municipal supply: A reticulated supply publicly or privately owned where the net take is;

  1. For the primary purpose of human drinking, or sanitation or household needs wherever they arise; or
  2. For the purpose of enabling local authorities to meet their general responsibilities (wherever they arise) under the Local Government Act 2002, the Health Act 1956 and relevant legislation, including supply for the purposes of industrial and agricultural use.

Domestic sewage: Means human effluent that does not contain hazardous substances.

Domestic sources: For the purposes of Section 6.1.5, ‘domestic sources’ are sources of pollution that are emitted from household activities. They include such sources as open fires, incinerators and heating appliances.

Drainage: The activity of lowering the water table to achieve productive land use. This generally involves the diversion of water.

Drainage district: Means a district constituted under s29 of the Local Government Act 1974.

Drain maintenance: The work that is carried out to maintain an adequate flow of water through a network of drains or canals. Typically, the work involves weed control and desilting.

Drilled hole: Any hole that is created by drilling, percussion or washing methods of construction, whether permanent or temporary and drilled for any purpose.

Drilling: Any method (including percussion and washing) used to drill holes into land.

Dump: A site situated on production land in which the disposal of solid waste generated from that land takes places, but excluding any dead animal material or any waste generated from any industrial or trade process on that production land.

Dynamic olfactometry: A technique for assessing odours using a trained panel of people and successive dilutions of an odour sample.

Ecosystem°: A dynamic complex of plant, animal and micro-organism communities and their non-living environment, interacting as functional unit.

Ecotoxic6: Capable of causing ill health, injury, or death to any living organism.

Efficient Allocation: Includes economic, technical and dynamic efficiency.

Efficient Use: Where the volume of water taken is within the actual requirements for its intended use.

Effect*: Unless the context otherwise requires, the term ‘effect’ includes:

  1. any positive or adverse effect,
  2. any temporary or permanent effect,
  3. any past, present, or future effect,
  4. any cumulative effect which arises over time or in combination with other effects – regardless of the scale, intensity, duration, or frequency of the effect, and also includes:
    1. any potential effect of high probability,
    2. any potential effect of low probability which has a high potential impact.

Effective disposal area: For the purposes of rules in Section 3.5.7 ‘effective disposal area’ means the area of land that is available for the infiltration and assimilation of effluent. The effective disposal area may extend beyond the property boundary provided an easement is registered on a the title of the receiving property.

Electric Lines: An electric line as defined in the Electricity Regulations 1997.

Electricity Operator: Means a network utility operator involved in the supply of electricity, as defined in the Electricity Act 1992

Energy°: The capacity of a body to do work.

Environmental education°: The provision of practical information and support to people and communities, with the aim of changing the ways resources are cared for and used, for the purposes of promoting sustainable management of natural and physical resources.

Enthalpy: The total thermodynamic energy contained within a given body of material. If the material is a fluid then this total would include the energy associated with any steam or vapour as well as the energy contained in any liquid.

Environment*: Includes:

  1. ecosystems and their constituent parts, including people and communities and
  2. all natural and physical resources; and
  3. amenity values; and
  4. the social, economic, aesthetic, and cultural conditions which affect the matters stated in paragraphs a) to c) of this definition or which are affected by those matters.

Environmental results anticipated°: The intended result or measurable outcome expected on the environment, which occurs as a consequence of implementing a policy or method.

Ephemeral streams: Streams that flow continuously for at least three months between March and September but do not flow all year.

Esplanade area°: An area of land vested as esplanade reserve or esplanade strip.

Esplanade strip*: A strip of land created by the registration of an instrument in accordance with s232 for a purpose or purposes set out in s229 of the RMA.

Farm animal effluent: Effluent from livestock kept in a confined area which is collected and discharged.

Farm drainage canal: An artificial watercourse on a farm that contains no natural portions from its confluence with a river or stream to its headwaters, and includes a farm drain or a farm canal.

Farming Activities: The grazing of animals or the growing of produce, including crops, market gardens and orchard produce but not including planted production forest and ancillary grazing of animals or cropping.

Fertiliser: Any substance or mix of substances, that is not a biosolid or liquid or sludge derived from an activated wastewater treatment process and which is described as, or held to be for, or suitable for, sustaining or increasing the growth, productivity or quality of plants (or animals indirectly) through the application to plants and soils of the following nutrients: nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, sulphur, magnesium, calcium, chloride, sodium, as “major nutrients” or manganese, iron, zinc, copper, boron, cobalt, molybdenum, iodine, selenium as “minor nutrients”; non-nutrient attributes of the materials used in the fertiliser and fertiliser additives.

Flaring: The burning off of surplus gas. Predominately associated with petroleum exploration or landfill gas production.

Flocculation: Process in which clay and other soil particles adhere to form larger groupings or aggregates7.

Floodplain: The surface of relatively smooth land built of alluvium adjacent to a river channel, and covered with water during flooding of the river.

Ford#: A structure within the bed of a river (that is permanently or frequently overtopped by water) that provides a hard surface for the purpose of enabling people, livestock or vehicles to cross that river bed.

Frontal dune: The seaward most foredune from Mean High Water Springs (MHWS) to the lowest point of the dune on the landward margin.

diagram of a frontal dune

Fumigants: Substances used to eradicate, modify or control flora or fauna within any enclosed area or premises.

Geothermal condensate: Geothermal fluid condensed from the steam fraction of taken geothermal water.

Geothermal energy*: Energy derived or derivable from, and produced within, the earth by natural heat phenomena; and includes all geothermal water.

Geothermal energy source: Heated body of magma embedded many kilometres below the surface of the Earth, which supports a convective system supplying geothermal water to aquifers nearer the Earth’s surface.

Geothermal Development: the use of geothermal resources for large-scale energy production.

Geothermal Features: Surface manifestations of geothermal processes or discharges, including steam-fed features, geothermal water-fed features, and remnant features such as hydrothermal eruption craters and ancient sinters. Some geothermal features are defined as Significant Geothermal Features. Those that are not Significant Geothermal Features include but are not limited to:

  • Fumaroles producing steam of less than 100°C
  • Heated or steaming ground
  • Geothermally altered ground
  • Geothermal collapse pits
  • Geothermal springs or seeps
  • Ancient sinter

Geothermal ground water: Geothermal water found within the earth.

Geothermal steam: See definition of geothermal water.

Geothermal System: An individual body of geothermal energy and water not believed to be hydrologically connected to any other. The system includes material containing heat or energy surrounding any geothermal water, and all plants, animals and other characteristics dependent on the body of geothermal energy and water.

Geothermal water*: Water heated within the earth by natural phenomena to a temperature of 30 degrees Celsius or more; and includes all steam, water, and water vapour, and every mixture of all or any of them that has been heated by natural phenomena.

Gradient control structure: A structure within the bed of a river or stream that establishes a stable channel width and bed level at its location and does not cause upstream ponding.

Green waste: Waste organic material including:

  1. vegetative material, but not tree trunks or limbs larger than 100 mm diameter,
  2. vegetable peelings or trimmings and other organic kitchen wastes,
  3. soil attached to plant roots.

Green waste does not include animal products (e.g. manure, feathers, carcasses) other than as an occasional or incidental input, hazardous substances or treated timber.

Groundwater: The subsurface water within the zone of saturation where the pore spaces are filled with water and the pressure of water is equal to or greater than atmospheric pressure.  For the purposes of this plan groundwater excludes water flowing in karst systems which are considered to be surface water.

Habitat°: The place or type of site where an organism or population normally occurs.

Halogenated hydrocarbons: Hydrocarbons with fluorine, bromine, iodine, or chlorine attached.

Hapu: Band, subtribe, tribe.

Hazardous substance: Unless expressly provided otherwise by regulations prepared under the Hazardous Substances and New Organisms Act 1996 or Resource Management Act 1991, ‘hazardous substances’ means any substance:

  1. with one or more of the following intrinsic properties
    1. explosiveness
    2. flammability
    3. a capacity to oxidise
    4. corrosiveness
    5. toxicity (including chronic toxicity)
    6. ecotoxicity, with or without bioaccumulation; or
  2. which on contact with air or water (other than air or water where the temperature or pressure has been artificially increased or decreased) generates a substance with any one or more of the properties specified in paragraph a) of this definition.

High risk erosion area: Means any part of any activity (where the activity is not otherwise permitted):

  1. where the pre-existing slope of the land exceeds 25 degrees; or
  2. on coastal frontal dunes on the East Coast; or
  3. on coastal sand country on the West Coast (Mokau to Karioitahi) where loose sands are at the ground surface or within 10 centimetres of the surface; or
  4. within 50 metres landward of the coastal marine area of an estuary, except in the landward margin of an authorised stopbank; or
  5. adjacent to water bodies (including ephemeral watercourses draining catchments greater than 100 hectares, but excluding any other ephemeral rivers or streams), where:
    1. the land slope is between 0 degrees to 15 degrees – within 10 metres from any lake, wetland or the bed of a river or lake, or
    2. the land slope is greater than 15 degrees – within that distance from the wetland, the bed of a river or lake, or from mean high water springs to the first point at which the slope reduces to 15 degrees or less, or 100 metres (whichever is the lesser, outside the minimum distance described in i)).

This definition is illustrated in Figure 5-1 in Chapter 5.1.4.

HPS mixing zone: A point five kilometres downstream of the cooling water outfall of the Huntly Power Station.

Hydrocarbons: Those compounds containing only carbon and hydrogen.

Hydrologically isolated: Means where a barrier prevents water tables in one area being changed by modifications to water tables in another area. For example, a perennial stream acts as a barrier to ground water flow near a peat lake or wetland.

Incineration: The application of a combustion process under controlled conditions to convert waste into ash and gases. The combustion system should have control over oxygen, temperature, turbulence and residence time. Incinerator has a corresponding meaning.

Indigenous vegetation#°: Vegetation that occurs naturally in New Zealand or arrived in New Zealand without human assistance.

Industrial or trade premises*: These include:

  1. any premises used for any industrial or trade purposes, or
  2. any premises used for the storage, transfer, treatment, or disposal of waste materials or for other waste-management purposes, or used for composting organic materials, or
  3. any other premises from which a contaminant is discharged in connection with any industrial or trade process.

but does not include any production land.

Industry: For the purposes of Chapters 3.3 and 3.4, means the extraction and processing of raw materials; the manufacture of goods in factories and processing plants; bulk storage; warehousing; service and repair activities.

Intensive indoor farming: The housing and growth of livestock, or fungi, that is reliant on food and/or raw materials brought into the building. It specifically excludes intensive pastoral farming or greenhouses.

Interceptor system: For activities controlled by the rules in Section 3.5.11 ‘interceptor system’ means a facility designed into a stormwater management system with the purpose of:

  1. preventing deliberate or accidental releases of any hazardous substances in the stormwater system, or
  2. in the event of stormwater contamination by a hazardous substance, reducing all such substances in the stormwater prior to discharge to concentrations that will not result in contamination of either water or sediments to such a degree that is likely to result in significant adverse effects on aquatic life or on the suitability of the waters for potable water supply.

Implementation method°: Description of an action which outlines how a policy will be implemented, and can include specific procedures, programmes, or techniques.

Impoundment°: The collection or confinement of water (e.g. dams).

Integrated management°: Managing (i.e. identifying, prioritising and acting on) issues from the use, development and protection of natural and physical resources as a whole, and includes:

  1. integration across resource systems by recognising that natural and physical resources exist as part of complex and interconnected biophysical ecosystems.
  2. integration of resources across and within management agencies by recognising the need for co-operation and co-ordination and for consistency of approach in carrying out varying functions, powers and duties under the RMA, particularly in areas of shared responsibility, and by recognising opportunities that other agencies acting under other Acts may have to contribute to the sustainable management objectives of the Region.
  3. integration of methods to be used to implement policies recognising that there is usually more than one way of implementing policies in an efficient and effective way.
  4. integration of actions across a range of time scales recognising that effects on natural and physical resources and the environment may occur immediately, may have already occurred, may be delayed or may be cumulative.
  5. integration with social and economic interests, by considering differing social economic and cultural factors in the management of natural and physical resources.
  6. integration with the cultural and spiritual values of tangata whenua.

Intrinsic values*: In relation to ecosystems, those aspects of ecosystems and their constituent parts which have value in their own right, including:

  1. their biological and genetic diversity
  2. the essential characteristics that determine an ecosystem’s integrity, form, functioning, and resilience.

Inversion layer: A trapped layer of dense cool air beneath a layer of less dense warm air usually in an urban basin or valley. The ‘lid’ of warm air prevents upward-flowing air currents from developing and dispersing contaminants.

Issue°: A statement of a concern or problem as it relates to an aspect of natural and physical resources or the management of those resources within the Region. This includes those matters identified in s62 of the RMA.

Iwi°: Tribe, people.

Iwi authority*: The authority which represents an iwi and which is recognised by the iwi as having authority to do so.

Kaitiaki°: Guardian, steward. The meaning of kaitiaki in practical application may very between different hapu and iwi.

Kaitiakitanga*: The exercise of guardianship by the tangata whenua of an area in accordance with tikanga Maori in relation to natural and physical resources; and includes the ethic of stewardship.

Karst°: A limestone region with underground streams and many cavities.

Kawanatanga°: Governorship, government.

Kingitanga: King movement.

Lake*: A body of fresh water which is entirely or nearly surrounded by land.

Lake Taupo Catchment: For the purposes of Chapter 3.10 of the plan, the Lake Taupo Catchment includes all land within the geographical catchment which slopes and/or drains into Lake Taupo, as shown in the Waikato Regional Plan Lake Taupo Catchment Maps.

Note: if a property spans the catchment boundary full records and management details for that farming entity will be required in order to assess activities within the catchment. There is no intention to require compliance with the Lake Taupo Catchment rules outside the catchment shown in the Map.

Lake Taupo Near-shore Zone: The area of land from the Lake water margin at RL357.25, extending 200 metres inland. Where an urban area has residences served by on-site wastewater systems within 200 metres of the RL357.25 water level, the Near-shore Zone extends to include all properties within this urban area which are served by on-site wastewater systems.

Land*: Includes land covered by water and the air space above land.

Land Improvement Agreement: An agreement prepared under s30(a) of the Soil Conservation and Rivers Control Act 1941.

Landfill: A waste disposal site used for the controlled deposit of solid wastes on or into land excluding tailings dams and waste rock stacks.

Layering: For the purposes of Rule of this Plan, ‘layering’ means the felling of trees, along the bank of a water body, so the felled material may be anchored in place and regrow.

Leachate: The liquid effluent produced by the action of water percolating through waste or organic material, containing dissolved and/or suspended liquids and/or solids and/or gases.

Littoral: Of or on the shore.

Local authority*: A regional council or territorial authority.

Mauri: Described as a special power possessed by Io which makes it possible for everything to move and live in accordance with the conditions and limits of its existence. Everything has mauri, including people, fish, animals, birds, forest, land, seas and rivers; the mauri is that characteristic which permits these living things to exist within their own realm and sphere. Each iwi group has its own concept of mauri, however it is generally referred to in English as the life force, life essence or life principle (essentially having spiritual qualities).

Maataitai: Food resources from the sea.

Maatauranga Māori: Māori customary knowledge, traditional knowledge or intergenerational knowledge.

Mahinga maataitai: Food resource reserves developed in accordance with regulations arising from the Treaty of Waitangi (Fisheries Claim) Settlement Act 1992.

Mana whenua: Customary authority exercised by the tangata whenua in an identified area.

Mean high water springs: The place on the shore where spring high tides reach on average over a period of time (often recognised by the upper line of debris on the beach).

Median flow: Is the flow which is equalled or exceeded 50% of the time derived from a suitable long term flow record taking into account changes in climate or water management.

Mineral*: A naturally occurring inorganic substance beneath or at the surface of the earth, whether or not under water; and includes all metallic minerals, non-metallic minerals, fuel minerals, precious stones, industrial rocks and building stones and a prescribed substance within the meaning of the Atomic Energy Act 1945.

Minimise°: In relation to adverse effects, such effects are minimised when they are avoided to the maximum practicable extent. The degree to which adverse effects should be avoided will be determined while having regard to:

  1. the nature of the adverse effects and the sensitivity of the environment to adverse effects, and
  2. the relative costs and benefits of reducing adverse effects, and
  3. the current state of technical knowledge and the likelihood that any option for reducing adverse effects can be successfully applied.

Minimum flow: Is the minimum flow(s) set in accordance with Policy 2 of Chapter 3.3 of this plan to provide for a given set of water body values which are established by having regard to Policy 1 of Chapter 3.3. One function of a minimum flow is to determine when consent holders have to reduce, and ultimately stop, abstracting.

Modified watercourse: An artificial or modified channel that may or may not be on the original watercourse alignment and which has a natural channel at its headwaters.

Mooring: means any weight or article placed in or on the foreshore, or the bed of a harbour, navigable lake, navigable river or of the sea for the purpose of securing a vessel, raft, aircraft or floating structure and includes any wire, rope, buoy or other device attached or connected to such weight or article, but does not include an anchor which is anchorage, and does not include any structures associated with a marina. A mooring can either be a swing mooring which is placed on the sea, river or lake bed and allows the vessel to swing freely around it with the movement of tides and currents, or a pole mooring which is embedded in the sea, river or lake bed and to which the vessel is fixed in place at both bow and stern of the vessel.

Municipal solid waste: Any non-hazardous solid degradable waste from a combination of domestic, commercial and industrial sources. It includes putrescible waste, garden waste, uncontaminated biosolids and clinical waste.

Municipal solid waste landfill: Any landfill that accepts municipal solid waste.

Mutagen: Any substance capable of causing genetic mutation that may result in inheritable genetic effects.

National policy statement*: A statement issued under s52 of the RMA.

Natural character°: The characteristics of wetlands and lakes and rivers and their margins which may be ecological, physical, spiritual, cultural or aesthetic in nature, whether modified or managed or not.

Natural and physical resources*: Includes land, water, air, soil, minerals and energy, all forms of plants and animals (whether native to New Zealand or introduced), and all structures.

Natural diversity°: The variety of biological or physical resources indigenous to a particular area (such as a country or a region within it).

Natural hazard*: Any atmospheric or earth or water related occurrence (including earthquake, tsunami, erosion, volcanic and geothermal activity, landslip, subsidence, sedimentation, wind, drought, fire, or flooding) the action of which adversely affects or may adversely affect human life, property, or other aspects of the environment.

Net Take: The amount of surface water that is no longer available for others to take as a result of an activity for which the water is taken.

Where an associated discharge is intended to be included in the computation of a net take then:

  1. The consent to take water must be conditional upon the subsequent return of the minimum amount of water that is relied on to establish the net take; or
  2. For existing consents where there is no requirement for the subsequent return, the quantity of the net take will be assessed by the Waikato Regional Council;
  3. The associated discharge must:
    • Be of a quality sufficient to either meet the permitted activity provisions of this plan for discharges, or be authorised by way of resource consent; and
    • Be returned to the same water body in the same sub-catchment as near as practicable to the point of abstraction or upstream of the point where the take is being assessed; and
    • Occur at the same time as or within a timeframe as near as practicable to when the take is operating.
  4. Depending on the location of the discharge in relation to the location of the take, a surface water take may be assessed as having more than one net take value.


Where there is no increase in the nature and scale of a take from that authorised at 15 October 2008 any replacement consent for that take will be assessed, for the purpose of determining the net take, using the same net rate of take that was determined by the Waikato Regional Council when the consent was granted and as recorded in the Waikato Regional Council consent database.

New Zealand Coastal Policy Statement*: A statement issued under s57 of the RMA.

Nitrogen Leaching: The loss of nitrogen to the environment via percolation through soil.

Noise*: Includes vibration.

Non-complying activity*: Means an activity which:

  1. is provided for, as a non-complying activity, by a rule in a plan or proposed plan, or
  2. contravenes a rule in a plan or proposed plan, and
  3. is allowed only if a resource consent is obtained in respect of the activity.

Non-degradation°: The maintenance or enhancement of the status quo. In respect of water resources, this means the protection and maintenance of the existing quality of a water body, including its physical and chemical characterisation and the integrity and health of associated biological communities.

Non-point source discharges°: Contamination sources which are diffuse and do not have a single point of origin or are not introduced into the receiving environment from a specific outlet.

Non-qualifying s14(3)(b) take: A take which might otherwise be allowed under s14(3)(b) for an individual’s reasonable domestic needs or the reasonable needs of an individual’s animals for drinking water, but has, or is likely to have, an adverse effect on the environment.

Objective°: A statement of a desired outcome or end state.

Odour unit: (OU): The relative odour intensity of an air sample, measured by the ratio of (volume of sample diluted to absolute odour threshold)/(volume of original undiluted sample). 1 OU is a sample of air that contains odour at the absolute detection threshold.

Offal: Dead animal matter.

Offal hole: A hole excavated for the purpose of intermittently disposing of offal.

Off-target: In relation to Chapter 6.2 of this Plan, ‘off target’ means any area (properties or residences) or species (humans, flora or fauna) for which the discharge was not intended.

Off-stream dams: Those dams placed on land outside water bodies and include dams in artificial water bodies, and dry gullies or depressions.

One in Five Year 7-day Low Flow (Q5): The stream flow at any point that has a 20 percent chance of occurring in any one year (or a likelihood of occurrence of once in every five years, also termed a ‘5-year return period’).  The Q5 is calculated from the lowest seven consecutive days of flow in each year.

On-site sewage: The discharge of sewage from an individual property and within the property boundary.

Open burning: The burning of materials other than in a purpose built incinerator.

Open piled: In relation to any structure on, in under or over the bed of a river or lake means the nature of a structure’s supporting piles whereby no significant hindrance to the passage of water or sediment is caused.

Operative*: In relation to a policy statement or plan, or a provision of a policy statement or plan, means that the policy statement, plan, or provision has become operative in terms of clause 20 of the First Schedule of the RMA and has not ceased to be operative.

Organic waste: Waste that when decomposed will produce compost.

Orphaned site: A contaminated site where either no party can be fixed with legal liability or where the liable party is unable to fund the clean-up of the site.

Outstanding water bodies#°: Waters of superior water quality, where impacts of human activities are absent or minimal. Examples include water in national parks, wilderness areas, forest parks, reserves and other areas of high ecological significance.

Overburden#: Clay, soil and rock associated with quarries, mining, earthworks, road construction and maintenance.

Overburden disposal site: A site specifically designed and constructed for the disposal of overburden from a single source.

Papakainga#: A traditional layout of residential accommodation where dwellings are erected to exclusively house members of a whanau, hapu or iwi, on land which is owned by the whanau, hapu or iwi, and is located on Maori land within the meaning of Section 2 and Section 129 (1)(a) and (b) of Te Ture Whenua Maori Act 1993.

Pathological waste: Any:

  1. waste that consists wholly or partly of human or animal tissue, blood or other bodily fluids, excretions, drugs or other pharmaceutical products, swabs or dressings, or syringes, needles or other sharp instruments, being waste which, unless rendered safe, may prove hazardous to any person coming into contact with it; and
  2. other waste arising from medical, nursing, dental, veterinary, pharmaceutical or similar practice, investigation, treatment, care, teaching or research, or the collection of blood for transfusion, being waste which may cause infection to any person coming into contact with it.

Peat: Accumulations of semi- or under-composed organic matter usually occurring in wetland environments.

Perennial stream#: A stream that flows all year round assuming average annual rainfall.

Perishable food processing: For the purposes of Chapters 3.3 and 3.4 means the processing of any food (including dairy products, meat, fruit and vegetables) that will decay or spoil rapidly if not washed, refrigerated or preserved in some manner.

Permitted activity*: Means an activity that is allowed by a plan without a resource consent if it complies in all respects with any conditions (including any conditions in relation to any matter described in s108 or s220 of the RMA) specified in the plan.

Persistent substance°: A substance that does not break down, or only very slowly, in the environment (e.g. by decay, degradation, transformation, volatilisation, hydrolysis or photolysis).

Piezometer: An observation well designed to measure the elevation of the water table or hydraulic head of ground water at a particular level. The well is normally quite narrow and allows ground water to enter only at a particular depth, rather than throughout its entire length8.

Place of public assembly: Land or buildings including schools, that are used in whole or part for the assembly or gathering of people for such purposes as meetings, conferences, worship, entertainment, recreation, celebration, education or similar purposes and includes buildings associated with public or private hotels, travellers’ accommodation and marae.

Planted production forest#: A forest of selected species of trees that are specifically planted, managed and harvested for the production of timber or other wood based products, and includes understorey that has established beneath the canopy and areas that are demonstrated to be failed plantings from the previous rotation.

Point source discharges°: A stationary or fixed facility from which contaminants are discharged or emitted.

Policy°: A specific statement of the course of action (or type of intervention) which will be taken in order to achieve a stated objective.

Precautionary approach°: Recognises the need for caution where there is a need to prevent serious or irreversible harm to the environment in situations of scientific uncertainty, but will be defined in accordance with case law applying at the time.

Preservation°: In relation to a resource, means the maintenance, so far as is practicable, of its intrinsic values.

Primary Allocable flow: Is the high reliability flow allocation calculated as the difference in flow between the minimum flow and the Q5 as specified in Table 3-5.

Pristine°: In relation to an area, means being of original purity, unspoilt by human intervention.

Private: In relation to the Air Module of this Plan, ‘private’ means an area which is not a place of public assembly (as defined) or a public amenity area (as defined).

Prohibited activity*: Means an activity which a plan expressly prohibits and describes as an activity for which no resource shall be granted (and includes any activity prohibited by s105(2)(b) of the Historic Places Act 1993).

Property: For the purposes of Chapter 3.3 and 3.4 means one or more allotments contained in single certificate of title, and also includes all adjacent land that is in the same ownership but contained in separate certificates of title.

Protection°: In relation to a resource, means its maintenance, so far as is practicable, in its current state; but includes:

  1. its restoration to a former state,
  2. its augmentation, enhancement or expansion.

Public amenity area: Those areas to which the public have right of access under any statute, regulation, law or by-law, which may include:

  1. Crown or council properties, reserves, gardens, parks and airfields;
  2. Grasslands, sports grounds and recreational turf;
  3. Forest and bush areas;
  4. Road and rail verges and embankments, pedestrian walkways, malls and precincts;
  5. Beaches and beach reserves and adjacent foreshore areas.

Rangatiratanga: Chieftainship.

Region*: In relation to a regional council, the region of the regional council as determined in accordance with the Local Government Act 1974.

Regional coastal plan*: An operative plan approved by the Minister of Conservation under the First Schedule of the RMA and includes all operative changes to such a plan (whether arising from a review or otherwise).

Regional council*: Has the same meaning as in the Local Government Act 1974.

Regional geothermal resource: Includes all geothermal energy (including geothermal water), material containing heat or energy (derived from within the earth) surrounding any geothermal water, and all plants, animals, micro-organisms and other characteristics and features dependent on any body of geothermal energy and water located in the Region (adapted from the Waikato RPS).

Regional plan*: An operative plan (including a regional coastal plan) approved by a regional council or the Minister of Conservation under the First Schedule of the RMA; and includes all operative changes to such a plan (whether arising from a review or otherwise).

Regional policy statement*: An operative regional policy statement approved by a regional council under the First Schedule of the RMA; and includes all operative changes to such a policy statement (whether arising from a review or otherwise).

Regional significance°: Includes one or more of the following:

  1. matters or values of national significance
  2. issues and/or effects that are of concern to substantial parts of the regional community
  3. values associated with natural and physical resources or any structure, place or feature which are rare or unique within the Region
  4. the existence of significant cross-boundary issues and cumulative effects, where resources or effects cross administrative boundaries, and where co-ordination or integration of policies, actions or decision-making is required
  5. matters or effects which are of greater than local significance to tangata whenua.

Regional rule*: A rule made as part of a regional plan or proposed regional plan, in accordance with s68 of the RMA.

Regulations*: Regulations made under the RMA.

Renewable energy: Means energy produced from solar, wind, hydro, geothermal, biomass, tidal, wave, and ocean current sources.

Resource pool°: A reserve of biological or physical resources and the processes that are required for their perpetuation (may include, for instance, genetic resources, reproductively mature organisms, or resources important for the long term viability of species).

Riparian enhancement and replanting programmes: Programmes undertaken for the purposes of improving bank stability, protecting or enhancing water quality, aquatic habitat or for enhancing the natural character of a riparian area.

Riparian margin#°: Means a strip of land, usually of varying width, directly adjacent to a waterway and which contributes to the maintenance and enhancement of the natural functioning, quality and character of the waterway and its margins.

River*: A continually or intermittently flowing body of fresh water, and includes a stream and modified watercourse; but does not include any artificial watercourse (including an irrigation canal, water supply race, canal for the supply of water for electricity power generation, and farm drainage canal).

River control scheme: An area that benefits from comprehensive works to manage flooding and erosion and is administered by Waikato Regional Council and/or a territorial authority.

River Iwi Co-management Legislation: Ngati Tuwharetoa, Raukawa, and Te Arawa River Iwi Waikato River Act 2010 and Waikato-Tainui Raupatu Claims (Waikato River) Settlement Act 2010 and any subsequent co-management legislation incorporating the Vision and Strategy for the Waikato River

Roading or tracking activities: Earthworks associated with the formation of any new road or track, or the upgrade of any existing road or track, excluding normal maintenance of legally established roads and tracks.

Rohe°: A territory or boundary which defines the area within which a tangata whenua group claims traditional association and mana whenua.

Secondary allocable flow:  Is a lower level reliability allocation that is calculated as the difference between 30 percent of the one in five year 7-day low flow Q5 and the primary allocable flow, except as otherwise specified in Table 3-5.

Significant°: Noteworthy, or of considerable amount, effect or importance. Note: The application of the term ‘significant’ will be determined on a case-by-case basis, depending on the context in which it is used within the Plan.

Significant Adverse Effect of Off-Target Drift: For the purposes of this Plan, an adverse effect of off-target exposure from the application of agrichemicals is defined as significant if the application:

  1. has caused or is likely to have caused adverse effect(s) on human health resulting from one or more of the following pathological processes:
    1. allergies
    2. irritants
    3. toxicity
    4. carcinogenesis*
    5. teratogenesis*
    6. mental distress or disorder, or
  2. has caused or is likely to have caused one or more of the following adverse effects on amenity values and cultural well-being:
    1. reduced access to property or adjoining areas because of contamination (i.e. on grass or foliage) from spraying activity
    2. reduced or impaired use of areas of cultural or social significance including places of public assembly, or
  3. has caused or is likely to have caused one or more of the following adverse effects on natural and physical resources and ecosystems (including flora and fauna):
    1. contamination of domestic or commercial water supplies
    2. contamination of waterways (i.e. resulting in residues being detected in fish or death of flora or fauna)
    3. damage to crops and other plants to the point where the agrichemical has affected the growth and quality of the crop, or contaminates the crops to a level where residues exceed limits for safe human consumption
    4. damage to or destruction of significant indigenous vegetation identified pursuant to the criteria in the Waikato RPS
    5. death or illness of fauna, or
  4. exceeds a threshold specified for any substance in the agrichemical pursuant to the Hazardous Substances and New Organisms Regulations9.
  5. The likelihood of these effects occurring can be measured through comparison between residue levels in vegetation, water or animal tissues and threshold values set under hazardous substances or food protection laws. In determining whether an incident is likely to have caused these effects, Council will rely upon numerical thresholds such as these.

Significant Geothermal Features: In Development and Limited Development Geothermal Systems are those Geothermal Features which are listed in Tables 7-5 and 7-6 and mapped in section 7.10.

In protected, Research and Small Geothermal Systems, Significant Geothermal Features are Geothermal Features of the types defined in the table below.

Geyser Any naturally occurring geothermal spring that occasionally or frequently erupts producing an intermittent or continuous discharge by the evolution of a phase dominated by steam or other gases, vigorous enough to eject forcefully liquid water by surging, boiling, throwing, splashing, or jetting it into the air above a static water level or vent opening. This includes hot water geysers, perpetual spouters, soda geysers, and crypto-geysers. The area of a geyser comprises that of the spring basin and the area covered (perhaps intermittently) by surface water composed of the undiluted discharge from the geyser, and by any sinter deposits created by that discharge.
Spring Vigorously Depositing Sinter Any naturally occurring geothermal spring that vigorously deposits sinter on surfaces covered by its outflow, or any submerged geothermal spring that would be likely to vigorously deposit sinter if it were no longer submerged. The area of a spring vigorously depositing sinter comprises that of the spring basin, together with the area covered by any surface water composed of the undiluted outflow from the pool and any sinter deposits created by that outflow.
Recent Sinter Any sinter body that has received natural sinter deposition since 1900 but which is no longer receiving natural sinter deposition. This includes carbonate sinters (travertine). The area of a recent sinter body consists of that of all interconnected sinter in a single occurrence and the land formations underlying it.
Geothermal habitat on heated ground or cooled acid ground Any area of terrestrial habitat of thermotolerant indigenous species on current or formerly geothermally heated ground.
Habitat dependent on geothermally-altered atmosphere Any area of terrestrial habitat of indigenous thermotolerant species that is tolerant of, or dependent on geothermal alteration of, atmospheric conditions.
Mud Geyser Any naturally occurring geothermally heated mud pool that occasionally or frequently erupts. The eruption produces an intermittent or continuous discharge caused by the evolution of a phase dominated by steam or other gases. This must be vigorous enough to forcefully raise liquid mud by surging, boiling, throwing, splashing, or jetting it into the air above a static water level. This includes mud volcanoes exhibiting this behaviour. The area covered by a mud geyser includes the mud pool, its banks, and any mud formations built up by the ejection of mud from the pool.
Molten Sulphur-Producing Spring A hot spring whose water supply passes through elemental sulphur bearing rock at a temperature sufficiently high to melt the sulphur (119 °C) and bring it to the surface.
Superheated Fumarole Any naturally occurring vent, including those found underwater, whose main discharge consists of steam and other gases of geothermal origin with a temperature greater than the local boiling temperature of water. The area of a fumarole consists of the vent, any surface accumulating mineral deposits derived from its gases, and any ecosystems dependent on the heat and fluid flowing from the vent.
Mud Pool Any naturally occurring basin of turbid water or mud heated (or recently heated) by geothermal processes. The area of a mud pool comprises that of the pool itself, its banks, and any mud formations built up by the ejection of mud from the pool.
Geothermally-Influenced Aquatic Habitat Any area of naturally occurring seasonal or permanent aquatic habitat of thermotolerant, thermophilic, or extremophilic indigenous species in a water body or part thereof influenced by natural geothermal input, or in a Geothermally-Influenced Water Body.
Geothermally-Influenced Water Body Any naturally occurring wetland, lake, pool, or stream, or portion thereof (including the bed and banks), whose chemical or temperature profile is significantly influenced by natural geothermal input and which is either:
  • a standing water body of greater than 30 m2 surface area, or
  • a flowing water body longer than 100 metres and with a flow greater than 0.1 m3/sec

in which natural geothermal input has caused the water to have:
  • a temperature of greater than 30°C, or
  • a chloride concentration of greater than 120 g/m3, or
  • a sulphate concentration of greater than 60 g/m3, or
  • geothermal mineral deposition

measured at least 7 days after a significant rainfall event.
In large or poorly mixed water bodies, only those portions which meet the above conditions are included in this definition.
Hydrothermal Eruption Crater Any naturally occurring crater produced by the explosive boiling of geothermal water without the direct involvement of near-surface magma, and by the consequent ejection of material derived from the rock matrix. The area of a hydrothermal eruption crater comprises that of the crater, its sides, and the ejecta deposited around the crater.
Culturally Significant Feature Any geothermal surface feature, whether artificial, natural, or modified that is deemed significant following consideration of the criteria for determining significance of cultural heritage resources in Appendix 4 of the Waikato Regional Policy Statement.

Sink hole: A cave entrance, streamsink or doline.

Sinter: An incrustation or deposit formed upon rocks etc by precipitation from mineral waters, especially geysers. Formations include cones, terraces and sheets, and may be white or coloured, depending upon the presence of different algae and trace minerals.

Site: One or more allotments contained in a single certificate of title.

Slash#: The woody debris remaining after vegetation removal activities.

Slope: The steepness of the land surface. Slope is measured in degrees and to an accuracy no less than that achieved by a hand held clinometer or Abney level.

Soil: The mixture of mineral and organic material at the land surface of the earth that is capable of sustaining plant life. Soil includes all naturally occurring loose or soft deposit overlying the solid bedrock crust.

Soil conservation°: The management of land to maintain New Zealand’s soil and water resources to provide the widest range of sustainable benefits for the needs and aspirations of present and future generations, and includes:

  1. the maintenance of the productive potential of the nation’s soil resources to retain sustainable land use options for present and future generations
  2. the maintenance of catchments to provide high quality water resources for downstream users
  3. land management practices that further enhance the protection of waterways from suspended sediments, nutrients, harmful micro-organisms and other pollutants
  4. the mitigation of the impacts of land related hazards including flooding, subsidence and erosion
  5. the maintenance of aesthetic, scientific and cultural values related to land and water.

Soil cultivation: Preparation of soil for the planting of crops and/or pasture.

Soil disturbance#: The disturbance of land surfaces by any means including blading, blasting, contouring, cutting of batters, excavation, ripping, root raking, moving or removing soil or earth. This definition excludes normal maintenance of legally established structures, roads, tracks and railway lines. This definition also excludes those activities that are defined as vegetation clearance or soil cultivation.

Solid measure: For the purpose of rules in Chapter 5.1, solid measure is the “in situ” volume of soil to be disturbed or the volume of the excavated area.

Spillway: A structure that allows passage of flood flows around or over a structure such as a culvert or dam.

Spray: The discharge of agrichemicals (as defined) whether in liquid, emulsified, mist, granular, powdered, pelletised or any other physical form or forms, and ‘spraying’ has a corresponding meaning.

Spray drift: The airborne movement of any sprayed agrichemical (including carrier, solvent, active ingredient).

Stopbank: A structure, generally a bank of compacted soil, constructed across or on land that prevents flood flows from inundating defined areas.

Stormwater: Artificially chanellised rainwater prior to its point of discharge to land or water.

Streamsink: The site where a stream submerges into a doline, depression, cave entrance or fissure in karst terrain.

Structure*: Any building, equipment, device, or other facility made by people and which is fixed to land; and includes any raft.

Structurally sound: Means that the structure is constructed to a standard that is appropriate for the purpose for which it was built, will withstand expected loads under normal operating conditions and complies with all conditions of the appropriate rule.

Subject property: In relation to the Air Module of the Plan, is the property on which the activity is carried out. The boundaries of the subject property extend vertically into the air. It excludes that area of land rented by a third party, unless a rental agreement specifies otherwise.

Supplementary Take: A take that is authorised by Rules and

Surface water: Water in all its physical forms which is over the ground, whether flowing or not, including water within cave systems, but excludes coastal water and geothermal water.

Sustainable management*: Managing the use, development, and protection of natural and physical resources in a way, or at a rate, which enables people and communities to provide for their social, economic and cultural well being and for their health and safety while:

  1. sustaining the potential of natural and physical resources (excluding minerals) to meet the reasonably foreseeable needs of future generations
  2. safeguarding the life-supporting capacity of air, water, soil, and ecosystems
  3. avoiding, remedying or mitigating any adverse effects of activities on the environment.

Sustainable Yield: The amount of fresh water take from an aquifer that can be maintained indefinitely without causing adverse effects on the values in that aquifer to be protected under this plan. This amount may change in the future based on investigations into the yield of the aquifer.

Taiapure°: Local fisheries management areas subject to the provisions of s54A to s54K of the Fisheries Act 1983:

  1. sustaining the potential of natural and physical resources (excluding minerals) to meet the reasonably foreseeable needs of future generations
  2. safeguarding the life-supporting capacity of air, water, soil, and ecosystems
  3. avoiding, remedying, or mitigating any adverse effects of activities on the environment.

Tangata whenua*: In relation to a given area, the iwi, hapu or whanau that holds mana whenua over that area.

Taonga°: Treasure, property. Taonga are prized and protected as the sacred possessions of a tribe. The term carries a deep spiritual meaning and taonga may be things that cannot be seen or touched. Examples include language, waahi tapu, waterways, fishing grounds and mountains.

Taonga raranga*: Plants that produce material highly prized for use in weaving.

Tauranga ika: Offshore fishing grounds developed in accordance with regulations arising from the Treatry of Waitangi (Fisheries Claim) Settlement Act 1992.

Technical Efficiency:  The extent to which the infrastructure involved in the taking, transport and delivery of water, and its operation, influences the amount of water required to achieve the desired outcome. 

Teratogen: Any substance capable of causing malformation during development of living organisms, and ‘teratogenesis’ has a corresponding meaning.

Territorial authority10: A city council or a district council.

Territorial sea*: The territorial sea of New Zealand as defined by s3 of the Territorial Sea, Contiguous Zone, and Exclusive Economic Zone Act 1977.

Tino rangatiratanga°: Chiefly authority, chieftainship, full authority. According to the Waitangi Tribunal’s Manukau Report (1985), tino rangatiratanga ‘…refers not to a separate sovereignty but to tribal self management on lines similar to what we understand by local government… rangatiratanga denotes the mana not only to possess what one owns but, and we emphasise this, to manage and control it in accordance with the preferences of the owner.’

Toxic substance°: An agent or material capable of producing an adverse response (effect) in a biological system, seriously injuring structure or function, or producing death.

Treaty of Waitangi (Te Tiriti o Waitangi)°: The Treaty of Waitangi as set out in English and Maori in the First Schedule of the Treaty of Waitangi Act 1975.

Unenclosed: In relation to the manufacturing and bulk storage of fertiliser, ‘unenclosed’ means exposed to the elements and without an interceptor system (as dedfined) in place.

Urupa: Burial ground.

Vegetation clearance#: Includes the burning, cutting, crushing, spraying and/or removal of all forms of vegetation including indigenous and exotic plants. It does not include those activities relating to routine cultivation or grazing, pruning or waste thinning operations, or canopy damage resulting from forest harvest activities.

Vision and Strategy: Is contained in the River Iwi Co-management Legislation.

Waahi tapu°: Sacred site. These are defined locally by the hapu and iwi which are the kaitiaki for the waahi tapu. Typically includes burial grounds and sites of historical importance to the tribe. In order to protect particular sites from interference and desecration, some tribes will refuse to disclose the exact location to outsiders.

Waikato River Co-management Framework: Comprises the governance structures and processes established by the River Iwi Co-management Legislation.

Waka: Canoe.

Waste oil11: Any oil that has been refined from crude oil, or any synthetic oil that has been used and as a result of such use is contaminated by physical or chemical impurities.

Wastewater: Effluent from domestic on-site wastewater treatment plants (including septic tanks and package plants) and public or private community wastewater treatment plants.


  1. Includes water in all its physical forms, whether flowing or not, and whether over or under the ground,
  2. Includes fresh water, coastal water, and geothermal water,
  3. Does not include water in any form while in any pipe, tank, or cistern.

Water body*: Fresh water or geothermal water in a river, lake, stream, pond, wetland, or aquifer, or any part thereof, that is not located within the coastal marine area.

Water Harvesting: Taking water to be stored for future use in accordance with Section 3.3.3 Policy 20.

Water Management Plan:  is the short title for a Water Conservation, Demand Management and Drought Management Plan required pursuant to Section 3.3.3 Policy 9 and Method

Water quality: The physical, chemical and biological attributes of water that affect its ability to sustain environmental values and uses.

Water Shortage Conditions: For the purposes of this plan a catchment or aquifer is in a water shortage condition when;

  1. River flows (based on a seven day rolling average of river flow data) fall below the median flow (for water harvesting takes) or the minimum flow; or
  2. In the Waikato River upstream of the Karapiro Hydro Dam, when calculated natural flows fall below the relevant minimum flows in Table 3-5 calculated for the relevant natural inflows to Lake Taupo and the Waikato River above Karapiro Dam; or
  3. Investigations indicate that the matters listed in Policy 4 cannot be provided for with the continued taking of groundwater.

Water table: The surface of a body of unconfined ground water at which the pressure is equal to sustain environmental values and uses.

Well: Any drilled hole that is intended to tap or monitor any natural or physical resource.

Wetland*: Includes permanently or intermittently wet areas, shallow water, and land water margins that support a natural ecosystem of plants and animals that are adapted to wet conditions.

Whanau: Family, extended family grouping.

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