Incompatible Activities

Incompatibel ActivitiesIncompatible Activities Indicators (what we measure)

Examples of potential incompatible activities

What are incompatible activities?

Incompatible activities happen when one activity has a negative impact on another nearby activity. This can happen when farming activities affect nearby dwellers, or dwellers intrude on farmland or nearby businesses. The most common negative effects that create these situations are loud noise, offensive odours and nuisance from dust, vibration, and glare. Incompatible activities have a higher chance of occurring if new developments and new houses are built in certain areas such as sites neighbouring industrial spots or established intensive farms (e.g. chicken and pig farms).

Our Situation 

The most common complaint received by Council is about loud noise. Most of these complaints are related to loud stereos in urban areas; however noise from activities such as industry, farming and other activities also has negative effects.

Odour from farm activities, particularly from chicken and dairy farming, along with other activities such as effluent disposal, smoke from fires, and rubbish, also contribute to the issues within the district. Dust and vibration also create a nuisance, although these are less common than noise and odour.

Noise complaints increased steadily until a peak of 570 in 2011/12, before dropping slightly over the next two years. In 2014/15, noise complaints rose again to 533 before fluctuating over the next three years. In 2017/18, there were 442 noise complaints. Odour complaints, which are consistently the second greatest cause of complaint after noise, have remained more constant, but at much lower levels. There have been only two complaints about vibration, four about glare, and no complaints about rehabilitation since 2011/12. The vast majority of noise complaints since 2010/11 have been about loud music in residential areas.

Number of building or resource consents granted within 500m of an intensive farm or within a scheduled industrial site

08/09 09/10 10/11 11/12 12/13 13/14  14/15 15/16  16/17 17/18
  6 1 0 2 0 0 0  0 0 0

The two consents granted in 2011/12 were for additional dwellings located within 500 metres of the intensive farms with which they were directly associated.

What Council Is Doing

Examples of potential incompatible activities

Council is able to control the effects of new developments through provisions in its District Plan. Zones set environmental standards, which reflect the desired values and environmental outcomes for within that zone. Performance standards also control potential nuisance effects of activities, and conditions may be imposed on resource consent applications to control these nuisances.

In 2015/16 38% of consents had conditions imposed to prevent incompatible activities. In 2016/17, 61% of resource consent applications were approved with conditions on noise, dust, vibration, glare and rehabilitation. This figure was 57% in 2017/18. Conditions of resource consent are not likely to prevent effects of loud music in residential areas. This issue is addressed through the excessive noise provisions under the Resource Management Act 1991.


What You Can Do To Help

  • Consider the effects of your activities
  • Let us know if you are being affected by noise, odour, dust, etc
  • Control noise

Also see our amenity indicator information


How are we Doing?

Anticipated Environmental Results

Incompatible Activities


  • AchievingAchieving
  • Progress towards achievementProgress towards achievement
  • Not AchieveingNot Achieving
  • Not MonitoredNot Monitored
A reduction in the number of complaints from the public concerning the adverse effects of activities Not Achieveing
The establishment of industry within zones and the allowance on a case by case basis of extractive industries with minimal industrial development out of zone Achieving
Significant natural and physical resources will not be unreasonably compromised by the introduction of new incompatible activities in the vicinity Achieving
Reduced incidence of nuisance affecting residential, business and recreational areas Achieving
Longer term improvements in environmental health and safety due to reduced rural nuisance and improved management of agricultural spray usage and application Not Monitored


Click here to learn more about District Plan Effectiveness and read the full report on Incompatible Activities


For More Information

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Customer Services
Matamata-Piako District Council
PO Box 266, Te Aroha 3342
Phone: 07 884 0060
Fax: 07 884 8865