EPA notices for hazardous substances

EPA notices contain many of the rules you must follow for managing hazardous substances. The notices and some accompanying guidance are listed here.

Most 2017 EPA notices on hazardous substances were amended in 2020 to incorporate GHS 7 hazard classifications.  The notices contain the rules for managing hazardous substances and explain what is needed.

The GHS 7 is implemented by the Hazardous Substances (Hazard Classification) Notice 2020.

See the revoked EPA notices and EPA notices no longer in force

If you are using a hazardous substance in a workplace, consult with WorkSafe New Zealand to ensure you are meeting their requirements. 

EPA Notices (Amendments and Revocations) Notice 2020 Plus

This Notice revokes the Hazardous Substances (Minimum Degrees of Hazard) Notice 2017 and the Hazardous Substances (Classification) Notice 2017. 

It also makes the changes to the consolidated 2017 notices below.

EPA Notices (Amendments and Revocations) Notice 2020 (PDF, 1.1MB)

Hazardous Substances (Hazard Classification) Notice 2020 Plus

This Notice sets out the classification system for hazardous substances in New Zealand, and provides the criteria for each hazard classification.

Hazardous Substances (Hazard Classification) Notice 2020 (PDF, 472KB)

Where the GHS 7 gives options, the Notice specifies which options we have adopted, and also lists the GHS 7 classifications we have not adopted. It also includes a New Zealand-specific terrestrial ecotoxicity hazard framework.

  • We have not adopted acute toxicity Category 5. This is the equivalent of HSNO 6.1E acute toxicity classification. Substances that were 6.1E due to aspiration hazard will be captured under aspiration hazard Category 1. Substances that were 6.1E due to respiratory tract irritation will be captured under the classification of specific target organ toxicity – single exposure Category 3, respiratory tract irritation. 
  • We have not adopted skin irritation Category 3. This is the equivalent of HSNO 6.3B.
  • We have not adopted aspiration hazard Category 2.
  • We have not adopted hazardous to the aquatic environment acute Categories 2 and 3. These classifications form part of the 9.1D classification. 
  • We have not adopted hazardous to the ozone layer.
  • Where the GHS 7 provides optional concentration cut-off values for classification of mixtures, we adopted the lower concentration cut-off values. This is consistent with pre-existing HSNO cut-offs.

The GHS does not cover terrestrial ecotoxicity hazards. We have therefore introduced a separate framework to manage these hazards that is based on the current hazard classifications for terrestrial ecotoxicity.

The new hazard class “hazardous to the terrestrial environment” is applied only to agrichemicals and active ingredients used in the manufacture of some agrichemicals. It comprises the following four hazard classifications:

  1. Hazardous to soil organisms (replaces HSNO 9.2A – D)
  2. Hazardous to terrestrial vertebrates (replaces HSNO 9.3A – C)
  3. Hazardous to terrestrial invertebrates (replaces HSNO 9.4A – C)
  4. Designed for biocidal action (replaces HSNO 9.1D biocide).
Consolidated Hazardous Substances (Labelling) Notice 2017 Plus

This notice sets out the rules for the information that must be included on the labels of hazardous substances. It combines a number of rules currently spread across different sets of regulations.

The notice also allows compliant labels from Australia, EU, Canada, and USA to be used, as long as certain New Zealand specific information is also included.

Consolidated Hazardous Substances (Labelling) Notice 2017 (PDF, 576KB)

What has changed

The consolidated version of the Hazardous Substances (Labelling) Notice 2017 as amended by the EPA Notices (Amendments and Revocations) Notice 2020 has the following changes:

  • Replaced HSNO classes and classifications with GHS 7 classes and classifications with minor changes to wording.
  • Removed the clause on labelling elements for desensitised explosives as these are now included within GHS 7. 
  • Replaced the term “pesticide” and its associated definition with the term “agrichemical” and associated definition.
  • Amended clauses relating to labelling agrichemicals to:
    • take into account that the term “agrichemicals” is now used, which covers a wider range of substances than the term “pesticides”
    • reflect the new terminology for substances that are hazardous to the terrestrial environment
    • include performance-based requirements for labelling agrichemicals that are hazardous to the terrestrial environment (clause 19), that are equivalent to those that applied under the Hazardous Substances (Identification) Regulations 2001.
  • Changed transitional provisions.
  • Removed the Schedule that provides the HSNO to GHS classification correlations table (this table is now in the Hazard Classifications Notice).
  • Made minor changes to improve consistency, readability and correct obvious errors.
Consolidated Hazardous Substances (Packaging) Notice 2017 Plus

This Notice sets the rules for the packaging of hazardous substances, including the rules for child-resistant packaging. 

Consolidated Hazardous Substances (Packaging) Notice 2017 (PDF, 621KB)

What has changed

The consolidated version of the Hazardous Substances (Packaging) Notice 2017 as amended by the EPA Notices (Amendments and Revocations) Notice 2020 has the following changes:

  • Replaced HSNO classifications with GHS 7 classifications with minor changes to wording.
  • Changed transitional provisions.
Consolidated Hazardous Substances (Safety Data Sheets) Notice 2017 Plus

This Notice sets the rules for the format and content of a safety data sheet. 

The Notice also allows compliant safety data sheets from Australia, EU, Canada, and USA to be used, as long as certain New Zealand specific information is also included.

Consolidated Hazardous Substances (Safety Data Sheets) Notice 2017 (PDF, 599KB)

What has changed

The consolidated version of the Hazardous Substances (Safety Data Sheets) Notice 2017 as amended by the EPA Notices (Amendments and Revocations) Notice 2020 has the following changes.

  • Replaced HSNO classifications with GHS 7 classifications with minor changes to wording.
  • Minor amendments to reflect GHS 7 becoming the new classification system.
  • Changed transitional provisions.
  • Removed Schedule 2 that provides the HSNO to GHS classification correlations table (this table is now in the Hazard Classifications Notice).
  • Made minor changes to improve consistency, readability and correct obvious errors. 

Please be aware of the following error

There is an error in the consolidated Safety Data Sheets Notice (EPA Consolidation 30 April 2021) that we are currently in the process of correcting. Until this notice has been legally amended, please read this notice as follows: 

  • In clause 9(2)(a) replace “2(b)(iii)” with “2(b)(ii)”.
  • In clause 10(2)(a) replace “2(b)(iii)” with “2(b)(ii)”. 
Consolidated Hazardous Substances (Disposal) Notice 2017 Plus

This Notice sets the national minimum standard for the disposal of hazardous substances.

Consolidated Hazardous Substances (Disposal) Notice 2017 (PDF, 264KB)

What has changed

The consolidated version of the Hazardous Substances (Disposal) Notice 2017 as amended by the EPA Notices (Amendments and Revocations) Notice 2020 has the following changes.

  • Replaced HSNO classifications with GHS 7 classifications with minor changes to wording.
  • Replaced the term “packaging” with “container” in several clauses.
  • Amended clause 9 (2)(b) to exclude skin and eye irritants.
  • Added a definition of “bioaccumulative”.
  • Changed the definition of “rapidly degradable”.
Consolidated Hazardous Substances (Hazardous Property Controls) Notice 2017 Plus

This Notice includes rules:

  • to protect the general public when using and storing hazardous substances in places outside of work, and
  • to protect the environment when using and storing ecotoxic hazardous substances. Most of these rules are relevant to both workplaces and non-workplaces, and many of these rules relate to the use of pesticides.

Consolidated Hazardous Substances (Hazardous Property Controls) Notice 2017 (PDF, 1.2MB)

This Notice includes:

  • qualification requirements for users of highly ecotoxic pesticides in certain situations
  • rules to manage the risks from the storage and use of ecotoxic substances in workplaces
  • restriction on supply and use of certain highly hazardous substances to places outside of work
  • rules for hazardous substances used or stored in places outside of work
  • rules about stationary container systems for domestic oil burning installations
  • certification of non-workplaces storing more than 100 kg of LPG
  • rules for filling SCUBA cylinders in places outside of work.

Related guides

Storing or using substances with ecotoxic properties (PDF, 272KB)

Protecting the environment while using pesticides (PDF, 544KB)

Sell or supply certain chemicals to workplaces only (PDF, 227KB)

What has changed

The consolidated version of the Hazardous Substances (Hazardous Property Controls) Notice 2017 as amended by the EPA Notices (Amendments and Revocations) Notice 2020 has the following changes.

  • Replaced HSNO classifications with GHS 7 classifications with minor changes to wording.
  • Replaced the term “pesticide” and its associated definition with the term “agrichemical” and associated definition.
  • Amended clauses related to the use of agrichemicals to:
    • take into account that the term “agrichemicals” is now used, which covers a wider range of substances than the current term “pesticides”
    • reflect the new terminology for substances hazardous to the terrestrial environment.
  • Deleted the default qualification requirement for people applying HSNO class 9.2A, 9.3A and 9.4A agrichemicals. This requirement will remain as either an additional control or added to Schedule 9 of the Hazardous Substances (Hazardous Property Controls) Notice 2017. The default qualification requirements for people applying agrichemicals classified as aquatic toxicity acute Category 1 or chronic Category 1 is retained.
  • Deleted the default requirement to keep a record of application when applying HSNO class 9.2A, 9.3A and 9.4A agrichemicals. This requirement will remain as either an additional control or added to a new schedule (Schedule 8A) to the Hazardous Substances (Hazardous Property Controls) Notice. The default requirement to keep a record when applying agrichemicals classified as aquatic toxicity acute Category 1 or chronic Category 1 is retained.
  • Changed the current threshold quantity that requires signage at sites storing agrichemicals with terrestrial ecotoxicity hazards. The current threshold quantities for terrestrial ecotoxicity classifications cannot be retained due changes to the classification system for these hazards. A threshold quantity of 10,000 L / kg was applied to all terrestrial ecotoxicity classifications.
  • Made minor changes to improve consistency, readability and correct obvious errors.
Hazardous Substances (Forms and Information) Notice 2017 Plus

This Notice sets out all the information you need to provide to the EPA if you are applying for an approval for a hazardous substance under the HSNO Act. It also includes a form for issuing compliance orders.

Hazardous Substances (Forms and Information) Notice 2017 (pdf 512KB)

What’s changed?

Nothing. Most existing provisions of the Hazardous Substances (Forms and Information) Regulations 2001 have been moved – unchanged – into this Notice.

Consolidated Hazardous Substances (Importers and Manufacturers) Notice 2015 Plus

This Notice requires most people or businesses that make or import hazardous substances to provide us with some basic contact information.

Your details must be provided to us within 30 days of the first time you import or manufacture a hazardous substance. You will only need to do this once, although you will need to keep us updated if your details change.

Consolidated Hazardous Substances (Importers and Manufacturers) Notice 2015 (PDF, 216KB)

This information helps us manage hazardous substances in New Zealand and allows us to communicate with manufacturers and importers and keep them up to date and informed.

This notice also requires importers of certain explosives to provide certain information to the Authority, WorkSafe New Zealand (WorkSafe), and the New Zealand Customs Service.  

Amendments to the Notice

The consolidated version of the Hazardous Substances (Importers and Manufacturers) Notice 2015 as most recently amended by the EPA Notices (Amendments and Revocations) Notice 2020 has the following changes:

  • Amended clause 10 (Information and certification requirements prior to uplifting imported hazardous substances) to take account of GHS terminology for explosive substances.

Previous amendments to this Notice

Who the rule applies to

This rule applies to anyone who has been importing or manufacturing a hazardous product for a commercial use since 19 November 2015. Commercial use can mean for sale or trade, but it also applies if you are importing or manufacturing a hazardous substance to use in a business setting – for example, a beautician might import a product to use on clients in their salon.

The only case where you would not be required to give us your contact details is if you are importing or manufacturing a product that you will keep for your personal use, and no other purpose.

What we do with your information

We use your information to communicate with you to make sure you are aware of changes to the regime around managing the risks of hazardous substances. It will also help us better understand hazardous substance industries.

Change of details

As soon as your details change, you should email us to ask us to update your details. We will need to know your name, address and phone and email contact.

International exporters contact details

International exporters do not need to provide their contact details. The Hazardous Substances (Importers and Manufacturers Information) Notice 2015 applies to the New Zealand entity which is importing or manufacturing hazardous substances.

Laboratories

Laboratories operating under the Code of Practice for Crown Research Institutes (CRIs) and University Exempt Laboratories manufacturing hazardous substances in the lab do not need to supply their information. This Notice does not apply to small-scale research on hazardous substances under section 33 of the Hazardous Substances and New Organisms Act 1996. 

You can find out more under Section 33 of the Act

Previously supplied contact details

Even if you've supplied us with your contact details before for another reason, if you're now importing or manufacturing a hazardous substance, we need to hear from you.

We have a large number of stakeholder contact lists, however our data does not indicate whether organisations or people are importers, manufacturers or have some other interest in our work. We need to collect details so we can differentiate importers and manufacturers from other types of businesses we may hold information about and so we can be sure we have a comprehensive list. We will be using your contact information to keep you informed about any new rules or changes you should be aware of.

Large organisations (eg, oil companies) need to provide their details

If you are a NZ-based organisation and are importing and/or manufacturing hazardous substances then yes, you need to provide the information.

Importing or manufacturing hazardous substances assigned to Group Standards 

The Hazardous Substances (Importers and Manufacturers Information) Notice 2015 applies to all importers and manufacturers of hazardous substances other than people making or importing the hazardous substances for personal use. Remember that if hazardous substances are assigned to group standards a record of assignment must also be kept.

Hazardous Substances (Enforcement Officer Qualifications) Notice 2015 Plus

The Hazardous Substances (Enforcement Officer Qualifications) Notice 2015 sets the qualifications a person needs to be a warranted hazardous substances enforcement officer. Generally, to become a warranted officer a person must be competent to carry out the responsibilities, functions and duties for this role.

Hazardous Substances (Enforcement Officer Qualifications) Notice 2015 (pdf 537KB)