Containment approvals

If you are importing or manufacturing a hazardous substance in containment in New Zealand, you need a containment approval.

Containment approvals cover manufacture or importation of a hazardous substance for:

  • research and development of a hazardous substance
  • use as an analytical standard where approval to import or manufacture the substance has been declined or the substance is a persistent organic pollutant (POP)
  • formulating, relabelling, repackaging or storing a hazardous substance for export to a destination outside New Zealand.

A containment approval can be for a specific purpose, such as the use of a chemical as a test standard or a field trial of a pesticide. The key criterion is that the substance will be adequately contained. 

If you intend to import or manufacture a Persistent Organic Pollutant (POP) to be used as an analytical standard or for research in any laboratory, then a different application form is required.

Do you intend to use or commercially release the substance?

If you intend to use or release a hazardous substance outside of containment, you need to make an application for a release approval.

More information about release approval applications

How to apply for a containment approval

To make an informed decision about your containment application we need to understand how you intend to manage the substance or substances you are seeking approval for. Please provide the full details and comprehensive information about the containment system you intend to use and the substances you intend to test.

To apply for a containment approval, please download the applications form and confidential appendix, fill it in and send it to the EPA.

Containment approval application form (docx 370KB)

Confidential appendix for hazardous substances applications (docx 360KB)

The process

Containment applications are processed via the non-notified application pathway. This means that there are 30 working days between formal receipt and the paperwork going to the decision maker.

Importation or Manufacture of Persistent Organic Pollutants (POP) in Containment Plus

Under the HSNO Act, a containment approval must be obtained from us by any laboratory that currently holds, or wishes to import or manufacture, certain POPs for use as an analytical standard or for research.

The relevant POPs are:

  • Aldrin
  • Alpha hexachlorocyclohexane
  • Beta hexachlorocyclohexane
  • Chlordane
  • Chlordecone
  • DDT (1,1,1-trichloro-2,2-bis(chlorophenyl)ethane)
  • Dieldrin
  • Endrin
  • Heptachlor
  • Hexabromobiphenyl
  • Hexabromodiphenyl ether and heptabromodiphenyl ether
  • Hexachlorobenzene
  • Lindane
  • Mirex
  • Pentachlorobenzene
  • Perfluorooctane sulfonic acid; its salts
  • Perfluorooctane sulfonyl fluoride
  • Technical endosulfan and its related isomers
  • Tetrabromodiphenyl ether and pentabromodiphenyl ether
  • Toxaphene
  • Polychlorinated biphenyls.
Application form

To help laboratories with the application process, we have prepared a partially completed pro forma containment application form.

Laboratories that currently hold, or intend to import or manufacture, one or more of the POPs listed above must complete the application form then send it back to us for assessment.

All relevant sections of the application form must be completed, and you must provide a management plan which outlines how your laboratory intends to comply with the recommended controls. A list of recommended controls for containing these substances is provided in Appendix 1 of the form.

The statutory timeframe for processing each application is 30 working days, after which time you will be notified of our decision. 

POP containment approval application form (doc 506KB)