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He Arotakenga Tūponotanga ki te Taiao

Assessment of Environmental Effects (AEE)

All resource consent applications need an AEE.

What is an AEE?

An AEE is a written statement which identifies the effects of your proposed activity or activities on the environment so we can assess the likely impact of the proposal.

Effects on the environment that you will need to consider can be short-term or long-term, positive or negative, and may include:

  • traffic and parking
  • heritage or streetscape character
  • overshadowing of properties
  • reduction in privacy
  • noise and vibration
  • flooding
  • stability of land
  • infrastructure (capacity)
  • people and community.

You need to identify ways that any effects can be avoided or reduced, in your AEE .

It is a good idea to start preparing your AEE as soon as possible. This will help you identify information that may be required by us. Avoid a request for more information by supplying as much information as you can.

How to prepare an AEE

For large, complex projects we recommend you find an expert to help you prepare your application.

When preparing your AEE you will need to:

  • provide a good description of the proposal, the site and surroundings
  • confirm why you are applying for a consent and confirm compliance with the rules
  • discuss how your proposal fits with the Unitary Plan vision for that zone and how it meets the objectives and policies of the Plan
  • describe any effects on the environment
  • describe what effects your proposal may have on people
  • propose any conditions that may help mitigate any effects of the proposal
  • provide any specialist reports required to support the application.

Taking the time to prepare a good and thorough AEE will save you time and frustration later. Another source of useful information is the Ministry for the Environment website.

For small-scale residential projects with minor Unitary Plan infringements, you may be able to prepare your own AEE. We recommend you use our basic template.


Our tip

The templates are supplied as guidance only. You need to supply all the information we need under the Resource Management Act for us to accept your application.

If this is your first time making an application for Resource Consent, the Ministry for the Environment website also has a number of useful guides (including an AEE guide) to the resource consent process .

Suggesting conditions of consent in your AEE

Resource consents are usually granted with conditions, which help manage the effects of your activity; for example, sediment and erosion control conditions may be placed on a consent to manage the effects of earthworks.

If you think there are ways to reduce the effects of your project and you would like to propose these measures as conditions of a consent, include these as part of your AEE when discussing the effects of your project.

We can give feedback on any conditions you think might be appropriate for your consent as part of pre-application guidance.

National Environmental Standards (NES) 

NES are nationwide regulations made under the Resource Management Act 1991, separate from the resource consent and AEE process.

They set out planning requirements and technical standards on a variety of specified activities that have an effect the environment, including forestry, freshwater use, electricity transmission and more.

If your proposed activity is regulated by an NES, a permitted activity notice may be required before you start. There may also be requirements for ongoing monitoring and reporting to us.

For more information, see National Environmental Standards - permitted activities.

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