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Natural Hazards

New Zealand is subject to a range of natural hazards. These include natural events such as earthquakes, river flooding, coastal erosion and coastal inundation. These events create natural hazards when they affect people, property and the environment.

One of Nelson City Council’s responsibilities is to manage risk from natural hazards. Council is required by law not only to investigate natural hazards, but to make the relevant research available to anyone who is affected or interested.

Council fulfils this function in various ways, including:

View the Hazards Map

  • the Nelson Resource Management Plan
  • building consents
  • placing statements on property files noting that a property is potentially affected by a natural hazard (LIM and PIM)
  • managing infrastructure assets
  • civil defence responsibilities

Council has undertaken various technical studies to better understand where particular natural hazards may occur. This includes research and modelling for potential fault hazard, liquefaction hazard and flood hazard. Further information on each of these hazards is provided below.

Information regarding tsunami, including Tsunami Evacuation Maps and frequently asked questions, is held on the Nelson Tasman Civil Defence Emergency Management (CDEM) website.

Council’s natural hazards work is used to inform the development of the Draft Nelson Plan (resource management) which is currently being prepared and will replace the Nelson Regional Policy Statement, the Nelson Resource Management Plan, and the Nelson Air Quality Plan. Please visit the Shape Nelson website for more information on the engagement process.

Civil Defence

For information on civil defence and emergency management in the Nelson Tasman region please visit the Civil Defence website.

We are seeking your feedback on river flooding hazards

Council has updated the river flooding modelling that has informed the development of the Draft Nelson Plan Flood Hazard Overlays and associated provisions.  We are now seeking feedback on this.  Feedback is open from 18 August – 17 September 2021. Please visit