Compliance monitoring is part of the work to protect the environment

The compliance monitoring annual report for the year ended June 2018 has been released by Environment Canterbury.

Comparing the results to the previous year’s report, Environment Canterbury regional support manager Dirk Brand said he was pleased with the latest results.

"We're pretty pleased with the results, but we're continually improving our compliance priorities and processes by considering feedback from the community and consent holders."

Out of more than 5000 monitored consents, around two-thirds are water consents, 27% are discharge consents such as dairy and human effluent, and 8% are land use consents.

“There are agreed "Good Management Practices" around water use efficiency, nutrient management, effluent management and soil management.  Farmers must record these in a Farm Environment Plan, which is checked on a regular basis through independent audits.

“Our main focus is on high-risk consents and we closely monitor those consent holders who have a poor compliance history.

“They receive multiple follow up visits to help them achieve a better outcome and reduce environmental risk.

“Our first response is to help consent holders with advice and education before determining what other compliance actions might be needed.”

Brand said those who received a "C" grade after the monitoring team's inspection had to go through a process of working through an action plan to improve the compliance, while those who received a "D" grade tended to receive a written warning on the first visit, and an abatement notice if the behaviour did not change.

"What we do is very reactive. If there is an issue, our first response is to work with individuals and businesses to stop any immediate environmental damage.”
Over the past year 201 written warnings, 51 infringement notices and 39 abatement notices were issued.

There was only one prosecution relating to odour beyond an industrial site boundary.

Complete reports from 2017/18 and 2016/17

Find out about more of the work being done by Environment Canterbury and the community, and the progress being made.