26.1 Introduction

26.1.1 Infrastructure covers a wide range of essential services including utilities (e.g. treatment and reticulation of water supply, wastewater, and stormwater; electricity and natural gas generation and transmission); telecommunications; transportation (e.g. road, rail, bridge, airports, lighthouses and ports); hazard management structures (e.g. stop banks); waste disposal facilities; and public facilities (schools, hospitals, public housing, public transport). Infrastructure is essential for the economic, social, cultural, spiritual, and environmental health and wellbeing of the community. Waikato-Tainui considers that infrastructure should be developed and operated in a manner that is sustainable taking into account economic, social, cultural, spiritual, and environmental matters. Infrastructure development, operation, and maintenance is generally undertaken by the Crown and local authorities and, in due course, may be provided by third parties as the result of asset sales or privatisation.

26.1.2 Energy generation and transmission is considered separately in Chapter 27, ‘Whakaputa hiko – electricity generation’.

26.1.3 In the past, land for infrastructure development was acquired by various means including the taking of land under the Public Works Act. Maaori land has historically been confiscated in order to provide land for these services. There was little or no consideration of the ties that Waikato-Tainui had to the land nor was there respect for cultural and spiritual values. While Waikato-Tainui supports the need for infrastructure and the need to expand networks, commission or decommission plant, and to make provisions to effectively and efficiently operate infrastructure this does not give infrastructure developers and operators the automatic right to have an adverse effect on environmental, cultural, and spiritual wellbeing.

26.1.4 To avoid the repeat of mistakes of the past, Waikato-Tainui expects to be actively involved in the process of developing new infrastructure and ensuring discharges from existing infrastructure do not adversely affect environmental, cultural, and spiritual values.

26.2 Issues

Infrastructure development

26.2.1 In the past the development of infrastructure has had adverse impacts on the environment and on sites of cultural and spiritual significance to Waikato-Tainui. In the past land has been confiscated to provide for infrastructure development, which has had a major adverse effect on the economic, social, spiritual, and cultural development of Waikato-Tainui.

26.2.2 Infrastructure development often neglected to consider the principles of sustainability and has been based on the best “engineering” solution rather than a more balanced approach involving the consideration of cultural, spiritual, social, economic and environmental drivers or the use of enhancement principles. Waikato-Tainui acknowledges and accepts the reality of the need for infrastructure provided that the effects on environmental, social, cultural, and spiritual values are appropriately managed. Waikato-Tainui does not accept that a regional or national benefit should create a local burden.

26.2.3 Waikato-Tainui believes that its kaitiaki role has often been forgotten in the development, operation, and maintenance of infrastructure. Expensive litigation has resulted for all parties by not involving Waikato-Tainui in the early stages of planning. Early engagement with Waikato-Tainui is likely to avoid expensive and unnecessary conflict and litigation.

26.2.4 Management of water systems is often not undertaken in a holistic manner taking into account all waters (water supply, wastewater, stormwater, fresh water and marine water). There have been poor management strategies around water availability, water quality, and water use and consumption. Some of these matters are considered in Chapters “Te wai maaori – fresh water”, “Ngaa repo – wetlands”, and “Te moana – coastal environment”.

Liquid, solid, and hazardous waste

26.2.5 Waste generation is an unavoidable consequence of human existence. Waikato-Tainui has continually expressed concern about the manner of waste discharge into and onto land, and directly into water bodies.

26.2.6 Waste disposal, if not managed properly, will threaten the mauri of the land and the surrounding water bodies. Waste deterioration and the inappropriate storage and use of chemicals can cause waste and chemical leaching into the environment.


26.2.7 Possible effects of providing transportation infrastructure include impacts on visual amenity; alteration to water flows; increased sedimentation; barriers to migration for invertebrate (insects, etc) and vertebrate species (e.g. fish, bat, lizard, and bird); disruption of access and disturbance to fisheries and the habitat of other native animals and insects, cultural activities, and potential impacts on Waikato-Tainui sites of significance and waahi tapu. Sustainable planning of transportation infrastructure is important for creating environments where we want to live, work, and play, and for protecting water quality and ecosystems.

Natural Hazards

26.2.8 Infrastructure is vulnerable to natural hazards. Poor infrastructure planning and location has magnified the effects of extreme natural events.

Electricity generation and transmission

26.2.9 Depending on the form of energy generation there can be adverse effects from discharges, particularly from coal fired plants. Waikato-Tainui generally do not support any form of energy generation unless it is sustainable and renewable, or any form of energy generation that has adverse social, cultural, spiritual, or environmental effects that cannot be managed to meet the requirements of this Plan. For clarity, Waikato-Tainui does not consider containment hydro dams suitable as a form of sustainable renewable energy generation, due to the adverse environmental, cultural, spiritual, and social effects of such dams.

26.2.10 There is concern about the development of new transmission lines, particularly where they are 400kV above ground lines, and potential adverse effects on Waikato-Tainui environmental, spiritual, and cultural values.

26.3 Objectives, Policies & Methods

Objective – Waikato-Tainui engagement

26.3.1 Infrastructure development, upgrade, and maintenance within the Waikato-Tainui rohe occurs in partnership with Waikato-Tainui.

Policy – Waikato-Tainui engagement To ensure that infrastructure development, upgrade and maintenance within the Waikato-Tainui rohe occurs in partnership with Waikato-Tainui.


(a) New infrastructure shall be developed in consultation with Waikato-Tainui to ensure infrastructural development is in alignment with this Plan and any relevant Joint Management Agreements (JMA’s) in order to manage adverse environmental, cultural, spiritual, and social effects. As a minimum, the consultation and engagement process outlined in Chapter 6, ‘Te koorero tahi me Waikato-Tainui – consultation and engagement with Waikato-Tainui’, shall apply.

(b) In the development of new infrastructure, upgrading or maintenance of old infrastructure, Waikato-Tainui are engaged at the very early stages of scoping and that Waikato-Tainui remain engaged during the process.

(c) When designing water and wastewater systems, Waikato-Tainui encourages regulatory authorities and applicants for resource consents, and designations to apply principles of maatauranga Maaori design and environmental protection methods and techniques.

(d) Resource consent and designation processes under the RMA, relevant rules and conditions shall be developed by the applicant, regulator, and/or local authority in partnership with Waikato-Tainui that take into account kaitiakitanga and maatauranga Maaori.

(e) Waikato-Tainui may consider infrastructural partnerships where the provision of infrastructure meets the aspirations of Waikato-Tainui.

Objective – infrastructure development, upgrade, and maintenance

26.3.2 Infrastructure development, upgrade, and maintenance manages economic, social, cultural, spiritual, and environmental effects.

Policy – infrastructure development, upgrade, and maintenance To ensure that infrastructure development, upgrade, and maintenance manages economic, social, cultural, spiritual, and environmental effects.


(a) Infrastructure development shall avoid land in Maaori ownership except with the agreement of the Maaori owners.

(b) New infrastructure development shall take into account the enhancement principles contained in Chapter 7 “Te Whakapakari i Te Taiao – Towards environmental enhancement”. As a minimum all existing infrastructure shall be managed to sustain the ability of the environment to provide for future generations.

(c) Ensure that, in the development of new infrastructure, best practice approaches and appropriate environmentally sustainable and enhancing technologies are applied to ensure, as far as practicable, any adverse impacts on the environment or cultural and/or spiritual resources are avoided.

(d) Infrastructure development and management shall be planned to manage adverse effects on water bodies, stormwater, water supply and wastewater systems.

(e) The cumulative effect of infrastructure provision shall be considered as well as the effect of a single piece of infrastructure.

(f) When assessing infrastructure needs or making decisions on designations or consents regarding infrastructure, the adverse effects should be managed so as to achieve the objectives in this Plan. In particular adverse effects should be avoided on:

i. Land held in Maaori title or in the ownership of Waikato-Tainui;

ii. Waahi tapu and other sites of significance to Waikato-Tainui;

iii. Oceans, rivers, lakes, and wetlands that would hinder achieving the objectives and policies contained in the water management, fisheries and cultural chapters of the Plan;

iv. Areas of significant indigenous vegetation or habitats of taonga species;

v. Customary activities or fisheries;

vi. Natural hazards; and

vii. Culturally and/or spiritually significant landscapes and view shafts.

(g) In the event that adverse effects cannot be avoided, discussions shall be held with Waikato-Tainui to agree if the effects can be managed.

(h) Any local adverse effects of infrastructure that cannot be avoided, remedied, or minimised should be discussed with Waikato-Tainui to discuss whether the effect can be mitigated and compensated near the locality where the adverse effects occur, or elsewhere as agreed with Waikato-Tainui.

Objective – liquid, solid, and hazardous waste

26.3.3 Liquid, solid, and hazardous waste management is best practice and manages social, cultural, spiritual, economic and environmental effects.

Policy – liquid, solid, and hazardous waste To ensure that liquid, solid and hazardous waste management is best practice and manages social, cultural, spiritual, economic, and environmental effects.


(a) The full life cycle of waste from generation to assimilation/disposal is considered in developing waste management strategies.

(b) Manage waste including solid, liquid, gas, and sludge waste, according to the following hierarchy:

i. Reducing the amount of waste produced (including composting and mulching of green waste);

ii. Reusing waste;

iii. Recycling waste;

iv. Recovering resources from waste;

v. Treating residual waste; and

vi. Appropriately disposing of residual wastes.

(c) Encourage and expect that the waste management hierarchy is given high priority by national and local authorities, industry, and the wider community. This includes, but is not limited to:

i. Old municipal landfills being monitored and rehabilitated to ensure any adverse effects are managed;

ii. Ensuring wastewater and stormwater systems are designed, constructed, and upgraded to ensure wastewater does not enter stormwater systems;

iii. Local authorities identifying any areas where stormwater enters the wastewater system and making financial allowances in the Long-Term Plan for the upgrading of infrastructure; and

iv. Providing education programmes and partnerships with the community and Waikato-Tainui, promoting the concept of waste minimisation a ‘no waste’ society, and a hierarchy of waste management.

(d) Resource consent applications for discharges shall include waste management hierarchy options for any waste generated.

(e) Best practice standards and industry protocols shall be applied to the storage and use of hazardous substances.

(f) Design areas of potential contamination (e.g. Petrol station forecourts, stock truck effluent areas, and industrial hardstand areas) to prevent untreated runoff.

(g) All waste management facilities shall be sited, designed, constructed, operated, and managed to best avoid adverse environmental impacts. Facilities shall be designed and constructed according to best environmental practice and shall be sited away from water bodies, estuaries, or the coast.

(h) Minimise wastewater production by:

i. Developing standards for low water use fittings;

ii. Encouraging water metering and volumetric wastewater charging based on water consumption;


iii. Encouraging reduction and prevention of stormwater infiltration and ingress into wastewater systems through design standards and construction control.

(i) Stormwater, wastewater, and trade-waste by-laws ensure high levels of on-site treatment are obtained prior to discharge e.g. improve design methods to maximise the removal of heavy metals from the tradewaste.

(j) The release of environmentally persistent hazardous chemicals, or hazardous chemicals that could bioaccumulate to a level to have chronic toxic effects on biota is opposed.

Objective – transportation

26.3.4 Transportation infrastructure is developed and managed in a manner that provides for social, cultural, spiritual, economic, and environmental needs.

Policy – transportation To ensure that transportation infrastructure is developed and managed in a manner that provides for social, cultural, spiritual, economic, and environmental needs.


(a) The methods for policy and the policies and methods for Chapter 25, ‘Ngaa whakaritenga moo ngaa whenua o Waikato-Tainui – land use planning’ shall apply for this policy.

(b) Sustainable transport options should be incorporated into subdivisions and developments including options for public transport, carpooling, walking, and cycling.

Natural hazards

26.3.5 Infrastructure shall be sited and operated in a way to avoid impacting on the risk of natural hazards occurring or the magnitude of a natural hazard event.

Policy – natural hazards and infrastructure To ensure that infrastructure is sited and operated in a way to avoid impacting on the risk of natural hazards occurring or the magnitude of a natural hazard event.


(a) The policies and methods of chapter 17, ‘Ngaa Moorearea Ao Tuuroa – natural hazards’ apply for this policy.

Objective, policies and methods – electricity generation and transmission

26.3.6 T he objectives, policies and methods for energy generation and transmission are considered in chapter 27, ‘Whakaputa hiko – electricity generation’.