Stock exclusion regulations: Proposed changes to the low slope map

Closed 7 Oct 2021

Opened 26 Jul 2021

Results updated 12 Dec 2022

From 26 July to 7 October 2021, the Ministry for the Environment consulted on proposed amendments to the low slope map for stock exclusion. A total of 92 public submissions were received.

Thank you to all who made a submission.

Read the summary of submissions [PDF, 840 KB]


The Government is proposing changes to the low slope map which is incorporated in the Resource Management (Stock Exclusion) Regulations 2020.

Why your views matter

The current low slope map incorporated into the stock exclusion regulations averages slope over large areas. 

This has contributed to concerns that it: 

  • includes some steep land 
  • fails to accurately capture some low slope land 
  • unintentionally captures high country extensive pastoral farming. 

The proposed changes are:

  • use a new mapping approach called ‘local terrain averaging’ on land with an average slope of up to 5 degrees
  • introduce a 500 metre altitude threshold
  • use freshwater farm plans in areas outside the map, with a presumption that stock will need to be excluded from access to waterways on land with an average slope between 5 and 10 degrees.

Read our proposal on Stock exclusion regulations: Proposed changes to the low slope map [PDF 1MB]

You can use the interactive web map to see how the current and proposed maps identify low slope land. You can also download the spatial data sets for the proposed map from the MfE Data Service – one for the New Zealand mainland and one for the Chatham Islands.

This document asks for feedback on proposed changes to the current map only.

We are not seeking feedback on any matters already set out in:

  • the Resource Management Act 1991
  • the National Policy Statement for Freshwater Management 2020 
  • the Resource Management (National Environmental Standards for Freshwater) Regulations 2020).