Section 108 of the RMA allows councils to include conditions on resource consents. Conditions include standards, terms, restrictions or prohibitions specified in a consent following the written decision to grant the consent (s2 definition).
RLAA17 has limited the scope of resource consent conditions.
Conditions can only be imposed on a resource consent if:
- the applicant agrees to the condition; or
- the condition is directly connected to an effect of the activity on the environment; or
- the condition is directly connected to an applicable rule in a plan, NES, or wastewater environmental performance standard; or
- the condition relates to administrative matters that are essential for the efficient implementation of the relevant resource consent.
Subject to these restrictions in scope, conditions may relate to:
- the design or appearance of structures
- hours of operation
- restrictions on the quality of a discharge
- restrictions on the amount of resource use
- monitoring and reporting
- the layout of a site.
Conditions may include the provision of:
- a bond
- a covenant.
Specifying conditions of consent that are effective and enforceable is essential to the operation or development of an activity. Conditions also ensure any adverse effects on the environment are avoided, remedied or mitigated, or ensure that any measures proposed by an applicant to offset any adverse effects are implemented. Therefore getting the conditions right is essential.