Information on this page is not current law. It details new laws intended to commence on 1 July 2021 under the Environment Protection Act 2017.

To perform prescribed activities that may cause harm, you must have a permission such as a licence, permit or registration. 

Permissions work alongside the general environmental duty, ensuring performance standards and conditions are met across a range of activities. There are three tiers of permissions based on the level of risk to human health and the environment: 

  1. Licences for high-risk prescribed activities.  
  2. Permits for medium-risk prescribed activities.  
  3. Registrations for low-risk prescribed activities.  

This risk-based approach means we can target different levels of risk with the right balance of permissions and conditions. Our permissions scheme (publication 1799) outlines:  

  • your role, as the permission holder, in ensuring compliance and preventing harm  
  • what we consider when assessing an application for a permission  
  • how permissions work to manage the risks related to prescribed activities.  

Changes to existing licences and approvals

EPA is bringing existing licences, approvals and exemptions over to the new Environment Protection Act 2017 by: 

  • contacting licence holders to explain the changes 
  • updating waste acceptance and treatment codes, and their conditions 
  • updating conditions to reflect the new laws. 

Check if you need a permission to find out more. 

Permissions and other approval tools

Reviewed 21 May 2020