National environmental standards for greenhouse gases from industrial process heat

The standards set out nationally consistent rules for specific greenhouse gas emitting activities from industrial process heat. They also set out requirements for granting resource consents and setting resource consent conditions. They also describes specific requirements for the purpose, content and review of an ‘emissions plan’. 

Official title

Resource Management (National Environmental Standards for Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Industrial Process Heat) Regulations 2023

Lead agency

Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment

Ministry for the Environment

In force from

27 July 2023

Notice of gazettal [NZ Gazette website]

Why they are needed

Changes were made to the RMA in November 2022 to enable regional and local authorities to consider the effects of greenhouse gas emissions on climate change. 

The standards will support councils in their decision-making on discharges to air of greenhouse gas emissions from industrial sectors using process heat.

Process heat makes up 33 per cent of our overall energy use and contributes approximately eight per cent of gross emissions. More than half of process heat is supplied using fossil fuels, mainly gas and coal. 

Together with the National Policy Statement for Greenhouse Gases from Industrial Process Heat they will accelerate New Zealand’s transition to a low emission, thriving, and sustainable economy.

What they provide

The standards provide nationally consistent policies and requirements for reducing greenhouse gas emissions from industries using process heat by:  

  • prohibiting discharges of greenhouse gases from new low to medium temperature coal boilers immediately and from existing coal boilers after 2037 (after this date no further consents can be issued)
  • requiring resource consent to be held for new and existing fossil fuel boilers that emit 500 tonnes and above of CO2-e per year, per site
  • requiring resource consent applicants to prepare and implement greenhouse gas emission plans and set out actions to reduce emissions. 

They work alongside the National Policy Statement for Greenhouse Gases from Industrial Process Heat (NPS).

Reports and cabinet paper

Factsheets and guidance