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Changes to how hazardous substances are managed

New Zealand’s system for managing hazardous substances is changing.  The rules that govern the use of hazardous substances in the workplace are moving from the Hazardous Substances and New Organisms (HSNO) Act (administered by the EPA) into a new Health and Safety at Work (HSW) Act (administered by WorkSafe).

The changes are part of a wider effort by the Government to improve overall workplace health and safety. This page gives you details about what’s happening, and provides links to learn more.

Read information about the background to the reform and why changes are being made. 

Latest updates

3 April 2017

Consultation open - Transitional regulations 

We’re seeking submissions on a consultation paper for transitional regulations made under the Hazardous Substances and New Organisms (HSNO) Act.

These transitional regulations make sure there are no gaps in the rules after the workplace health and safety hazardous substance rules move from HSNO to the Health and Safety at Work Act.

We invite you to make submissions on these proposals. Submissions open on      3 April 2017 and close at 5pm on 12 May 2017.

Read the consultation document and download a submission form.

All submissions must be submitted in writing via email to:  or mail to Private Bag 63002, Wellington 6140, New Zealand.


New timing for rules coming into effect

The Health and Safety at Work regulations relating to hazardous substances are expected to be finalised in the first half of 2017, coming into effect in December 2017.  Our EPA notices will be finalised and come into effect at the same time as the regulations

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