Otago Regional Council made Plan Change 8 operative on Saturday 3 September 2022. 

View the operative plan change:

Plan Change 8 (urban topics)

The Environment Court released its decision on Plan Change 8 (urban topics) on 14 June 2022. No appeals were made. 

The Council amended the provisions as directed by the Environment Court under clause 16(1) of Schedule 1 of the Resource Management Act 1991. 

The Plan change and Environment Court Decision can be viewed below. 

The provisions are set out in the following parts of Plan Change 8: 

  • Part A: Urban discharge policies 
  • Part G: Sediment from earthworks for residential development 
  • Part H: Nationally or regionally important infrastructure 

Plan Change 1

Plan Change 8 (Rural discharges)


The Council resolved to prepare Proposed PC8 to the Water Plan along with Proposed PC1 to the Regional Plan: Waste for Otago (Waste Plan), together referred to as the “Omnibus Plan Change,” in August 2019. The overall purpose of the Omnibus Plan Change was to strengthen the management of activities that result in discharges of contaminants to water which are known to contribute to water quality issues. The aim was to improve water quality in Otago. 

Notification and submissions

The Omnibus Plan Change was “called in” by the Minister for the Environment on 8 April 2020 and referred to the Environment Court for decision under section 142(2) of the RMA. The plan change was then notified by the Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) on 6 July 2020. A summary of submissions and further submissions can be viewed on the epa.govt.nz page


To make mediation and expert conferencing easier, the Environment Court decided to hear PC1 and PC8 separately, and to separate PC8 into two parts – the primary sector and the urban provisions. The Environment Court hearings on the plan change have been completed. 

For information about Environment Court hearings on Plan Change 8. 

For information about Environment Court hearings on Plan Change 1.