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Environmental Protection Authority

We are New Zealand’s national environmental regulator: protecting our environment, enhancing our way of life and the economy.

The role of the EPA

What we do at the EPA has an impact on the everyday lives of all New Zealanders.  We are one of the government agencies responsible for regulating activities that affect New Zealand's environment.  

We’re excited to be taking part in Fieldays, and looking forward to learning more about the innovations happening in the agricultural sector that will help achieve a sustainable and prosperous future. 

What we do 

Our role involves carefully balancing environmental, safety, economic, and cultural factors to protect our way of life now and in the future.   

We work in a number of areas including:

  • making decisions about whether or not to approve hazardous substances including pesticides, dangerous goods, and household chemicals, and setting rules relating to their use
  • making decisions on approvals for new organisms (living things that are new to New Zealand), and overseeing the monitoring of approvals
  • administering the New Zealand Emissions Trading Scheme and Register, which contributes to reducing greenhouse gas emissions
  • regulating mining, discharge and dumping activities in the Exclusive Economic Zone and the Continental Shelf, a mapped area of ocean that starts 12 nautical miles out from New Zealand's coast
  • administering Nationally Significant Proposals (under the Resource Management Act 1991), and fast-track consenting (under the COVID-19 Recovery Act 2020).

Being proactive about environmental protection 

As part of being a proactive regulator, we have recently increased our capability in compliance and streamlined our regulatory processes.  

We’re also placing greater emphasis on engaging all New Zealanders in the work of environmental stewardship. One example of this is our Wai Tūwhera o te Taiao - Open Waters programme, which provides environmental DNA (eDNA) sampling kits to community groups wanting to protect and learn more about their local waterway.  

This year, we’re proud to be sponsoring the Change Maker category of the Sustainable Business Awards. This award acknowledges young people who are enabling and inspiring others to make positive and enduring change.  

You can find out more about how to nominate someone for the Change Maker Award, and the role of eDNA sampling in environmental protection, on our website and at our Fieldays stand.

Working together for a sustainable future 

As we approach our 10-year anniversary this July, we are looking ahead – thinking about the changes that we can make today to safeguard the environment for future generations.

Our success increasingly relies on connecting with New Zealanders - customers, stakeholders, and the general public - about the need to protect and enhance our unique environment. We’d love to hear what you want the Aotearoa New Zealand of tomorrow to look like - and how we can work together to get there. 

Join us at the EPA Sharing Shed for a free haircut in exchange for a conversation about what’s important to you when it comes to environmental protection. Come and kōrero with us!

Our News

Video Gallery

The EPA - NZ's national environmental regulator

At the EPA, we’re working for the good of Aotearoa-New Zealand. Find out about who we are, what we do, and what we stand for.

Sustainable Business Awards - entries are open

Last year’s Change Maker Award winner, Francesca Goodman-Smith, encourages other sustainability champions to put their names forward.

Cutz & Kōrero – Becks & Richard Tosswill

Award-winning Wairarapa farmers, Richard and Becks Tosswill, talk to hairdresser Jason Muir about what's important to them, environmental protection, and their...

Cutz & Kōrero – Mike Bunce & Lynda Coppersmith

EPA Chief Scientist Prof. Mike Bunce and Young Farmers' CEO Lynda Coppersmith talk science, technology and environmental sustainability.

Cutz & Kōrero – Sully Alsop

Wairarapa farmer, Sully Alsop, tells hairdresser Jason Muir what's important to him on environmental protection, and his vision for the future.

What else can you do on Fieldays 2021?

Watch all your favourite content from the Fieldays TV studio.

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Get tickets and come see us at Mystery Creek for Fieldays 2021. 16-19 June 2021

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