Plan Change 10

Lake Rotorua Nutrient Management – Plan Change 10 has been developed to manage nutrient loss in the Lake Rotorua groundwater catchment. This plan change is part of a wider programme committed to protecting water quality in the Lake Rotorua catchment. Input from public meetings, hui, information sessions, conversations and numerous research reports has been used to inform the policies, methods and rules being proposed in Plan Change 10. Under Plan Change 10, the establishment of crops in the Lake Rotorua catchment is problematic. Crops have the potential to leach large quantities of nutrients including nitrogen, and sediment. Crops should only be considered as a possible land use in the Lake Rotorua catchment where there is the capacity of land size to allow other land use changes to offset the large losses likely from the crop area. Please seek expert advice before progressing with any form of land use change involving crops. Commercial cropping in the Lake Rotorua catchment, regardless of property size, will require a resource consent. For controlled activities such as rural properties over 40 hectares in the catchment, they will now require a resource consent. Properties/farming enterprises that are considered controlled activities will be given a Nitrogen Discharge Allowance that they will need to meet by 2032 and will require a Nitrogen Management Plan that shows actions that manage the reductions. More information on Plan Change 10 – Lake Rotorua Nutrient Management can be viewed on the Bay of Plenty Regional Council’s website. More information on the use of best management practices to reduce the amount of nutrients from agricultural activities entering the lake can be found at

Planning – resource consents

When making a land use change, it’s important to consider whether or not this change will require a resource consent. Resource consents are vital to ensuring our natural and physical resources are allocated and used efficiently and sustainably, and are required under the Resource Management Act (1991).

What is a resource consent?

A resource consent is an approval to undertake certain activities identified in rules. They are generally required for activities that have a greater impact on the environment due to the significance of the activity either in the short or long term.

Resource consents specify:
  1. The length of time an activity can be carried out; and
  2. Any specific conditions that need to be met.
What is the proposed consenting system?

Proposed Plan Change 10 provides for three types of consent classes:

Permitted activity Controlled activity Non-complying
No consent needed as long as rule conditions are met Consent needed and will be granted as long as rule conditions are met Consent needed and may be declined

Whether a landowner will need a resource consent under Proposed Plan Change 10 depends on:

  • Property size
  • Rate of nitrogen loss from activities on the property
  • If managed nitrogen reductions are planned for
  • If there is commercial cropping, horticulture or dairy farming on the property.

Before applying for a resource consent, it is recommended that landowners talk or meet with a land management officer from the Rotorua Office. The land management officer may also be able to undertake a site visit to provide further advice on development of a Nitrogen Management Plan to support an application for Land Use Activities in the Catchment of Lake Rotorua (PC10). To arrange this, please phone 07 921 3377. More information on the resource consent process can be found on the regional council webpage: