25.4.2 Objectives and Policies: Hazardous Facilities

​​​​​​Objective Policies​
To prote​ct people, property and the natural environment by avoiding or minimising the adverse effects of storage, use, disposal or transport of hazardous substances.​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​
Hazardous facilities shall be located where they do not give rise to levels of risk, including residual risks, which are incompatible with the nature of surrounding land uses or natural environment.​
Hazardous facilities shall be designed, constructed and managed to avoid or minimise significant adverse effects, including cumulative effects.​
Hazardous facilities shall provide facilities and systems to avoid the contamination of air, land and water (including groundwater, potable water supplies and surface waters) in the event of an accidental spill or release of hazardous substances.​
Disposal of hazardous substances shall be undertaken in an environmentally safe manner to minimise the risk of hazardous substances being discharged into the environment.​
Hazardous facilities shall be located, designed, installed and managed to avoid adverse effects of natural hazards, e.g. flooding, on the facility so as to reduce the risk of hazardous substances being discharged into the environment as a result of a natural hazard event.​
The positive effects that hazardous facilities have on the economic and social wellbeing of the Waikato region and Hamilton should be recognised.​


While the use of hazardous substances provides benefits to communities by meeting a need for products and services, facilities involving hazardous substances also present risks to the health and safety of people, property and the natural environment, including ecosystems. Hazardous substances can escape into the environment as a result of inadequate management or from an accidental release or spillage. Hazardous facilities and their activities need to be managed well and located appropriately in response to these risks.

Reference to risks includes the consideration of residual risk. In some cases, the residual risk may be of particular concern because of the facility’s proximity to sensitive ecological areas or land uses (e.g. residential areas). In these cases the risks of the hazardous facility may outweigh its potential benefits.

Hazardous facilities are spread throughout the community. Some present very low risks because of the nature or small quantities of the hazardous substances held on the site. The District Plan assigns a level of control appropriate to the scale of risk that these activities present.

Hazardous facilities close to each other may generate cumulative risks that are greater than the risk of each individual facility. Where there are multiple hazardous facilities within a constrained area, each facility is to be designed and managed in a manner to minimise adverse effects on each other, as well as beyond the area occupied by hazardous facilities.

The disposal of hazardous substances generates risks to the health of the handlers, waste management facility operators, and communities, as well as risks to the receiving environment. The disposal of hazardous substances to authorised facilities or those serviced by an approved waste contractor will minimise the risk of substances escaping into the environment and generating adverse environmental effects.

Natural hazard events can threaten the containment of hazardous substances. Hazardous facilities are discouraged from areas that are susceptible to natural hazards as a means of managing this risk.

​Objective Policies​
The operations of established hazardous facilities and the areas within which these facilities are encouraged are protected from significant revers​​e-sensitivity effects arising from the inappropriate location of sensitive land-use activities. ​
The establishment of sensitive land uses within or near existing hazardous facilities or areas identified for such a facility shall be managed if they would create significant reverse-sensitivity effects that would limit a facility’s ability to carry out its operations without unreasonable constraints.​


Reverse-sensitivity effects arise where a new activity is introduced into an environment which has the potential to limit the operation of existing activities. These new activities are incompatible or otherwise sensitive to the effects of the existing activity. Reverse-sensitivity effects need to be taken into account, particularly for significant hazardous facilities or larger areas of smaller facilities, where residual risks cannot be reduced to insignificant levels. 

Significant established hazardous facilities in the City include the Te Rapa Dairy Manufacturing Site​​ and Crawford Street Freight Village. Industrial zoned lands are areas where hazardous facilities are expected to generally establish. Sensitive activities establishing in these areas or in close proximity to established hazardous facilities may constrain the current or future operation of such hazardous facilities.

Page reviewed: 12 Sep 2016 3:50pm