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The Waikato Regional Policy Statement 2016 Factsheets

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What is the Waikato Regional Policy Statement?

We all depend on our region’s natural and physical resources to meet our social, cultural and economic needs – water for safe drinking and swimming, soil for agriculture and horticulture, land for housing, geothermal resources for energy, and clean air. Natural and physical resources also provide many of our diverse ecosystem services.

However, our needs and lifestyles place a heavy demand on these resources through pollution, waste from land use, industry and human activities. Therefore, it is important that we manage their quality and quantity to protect their intrinsic values.

The Waikato Regional Policy Statement, or RPS, will help make this happen. The RPS is a planning tool that connects people across diverse communities, supports sustainable regional development and sets the overall regional direction for the management and protection of the Waikato’s natural and physical resources.

Through close collaboration between regional, city and district councils, the RPS ensures the way we use our resources does not tip the balance and compromise the ability of future generations to provide for their own needs.

Our kaitiakitanga – our care for the Waikato – will leave a legacy of a healthy environment, strong economy, and vibrant communities.

Key themes of the RPS

Uniquely Waikato: Natural features, indigenous biodiversity and areas of importance within the Waikato region will continue to be protected, and where possible improved, ensuring that planning balances environmental, social and economic concerns. The RPS recognises the importance of the environment to the Waikato economy and society, and acknowledges that the quality of resources determines the success of the economy.

A growing region: Planning for long-term growth of the Waikato has been cemented in the RPS. Settlement patterns for the Future Proof sub-region (Hamilton city, Waipa and Waikato districts) are provided for, with future urban growth areas anchored within the document.

Collaborative focus: The need for appropriate engagement is very clear within the RPS. It recognises that a lot of good work on improving the environment is already underway by councils, tāngata whenua, landowners, community groups and industry, and it seeks to build on these positive results into the future.

Regional consistency: The RPS clearly states what is expected of the Waikato Regional Council and local councils in the region. In many instances, the role of the WRC is to act as a facilitator or coordinator of policy development. The RPS’s policy framework provides an overall regional direction but enables flexibility of approach for local councils to respond to local needs.


click here to read about integrated management Click here to read about the air section Click here to read about the built environment Click here to read the coastal marine environment
Integrated Management Air Built Environment Coastal Marine Area
Click here to read about the geothermal areas Click here to read the heritage section Click here to read the biodiversity area
Freshwater bodies  Geothermal Heritage  Indigenous Biodiversity
Click here to read the landscapes, natural character and amenity area Click here to read the natural hazards section Click here to read the land and soils section  
natural character
and amenity
Natural Hazards Soils