Firms To Watch: Projects and resources management (including environment)

Holding offices in Wellington, Auckland and Christchurch, Greenwood Roche is distinguished for its focus of project financing and development and substantial public and private sector client base. Niche sectors of expertise include climate change and emissions trading, Crown Minerals Act, land access, electricity grid upgrade projects and health, safety and environment matters.

Projects and resources management (including environment) in New Zealand

Bell Gully

Bell Gully has been closely involved with the government response to the Covid-19 pandemic, with Simon Watt leading the team on negotiations for vaccine purchase agreements. The practice also advised on funding facilities to assist Pacific Island countries during the pandemic. The firm advises on large-scale infrastructure projects and resource management head Andrew Beatson has led on a number of  substantial projects in the transport, port redevelopment and social housing arenas. He works in concert with infrastructure head Hugh Kettle who also advises on PPPs and financing and environmental and resource management specialist Natasha Garvan who has represented Auckland Transport in the Environment Court. David Coull heads the energy practice which serves major oil, gas and mining clients and the team is also advising clients in relation to geothermal projects.

Practice head(s):

Andrew Beatson;David Coull; Hugh Kettle

Other key lawyers:

Simon Watt; Natasha Garvan

Testimonials

‘Strategic, responsive, personable.’

‘Natasha Garvan – very personable, kind, respectful, strategic, responsive. Andrew Beatson – friendly, strategic, strong litigator.’

‘They understand our business, pressures and aims, when this is matched with their specific expertise positive outcomes are achieved.’

‘Andrew Beatson is exceptional. His advice is concise, pragmatic and spot-on. He sees the big picture and cuts out the fluff. We always focus effort in the right area, there is no wastage and therefore time (ie costs) are also kept to a minimum. Natasha Garvan is super-efficient. Has an excellent approach in engaging with officials and teasing out issues in a non-confrontational manner.’

Key clients

The Treasury

Reserve Bank of New Zealand

Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment

Ministry of Defence

Ministry of Education

Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade

Ministry of Housing and Urban Development

Department of Corrections

Te Waihanga – The New Zealand Infrastructure Commission

Kāinga Ora – Homes and Communities

Electricity Authority

Te Pūkenga – New Zealand Institute of Skills & Technology

Te Tupu Ngātahi – The Supporting Growth Alliance

Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu

Waka Kotahi – The New Zealand Transport Agency

Transpower

Wellington City Council

Barton NZ Limited / The Barton Group

Contact Energy Limited

Electricity Authority

First Gas Limited

Meridian Energy Limited

New Zealand Oil & Gas Limited

Ofer Group

Trans-Tasman Resources Limited

Transpower New Zealand

Wellington Electricity Lines Limited

City Rail Link Limited

Hawke’s Bay Regional Council

Kainga Ora (formerly Housing New Zealand)

Marlborough District Council

Meridian Energy Limited

Port Marlborough New Zealand Limited

Tainui Group Holdings

Te Tupu Ngātahi – The Supporting Growth Alliance (an alliance comprising NZTA, AT, Auckland Council, Buddle Findlay, Bell Gully, Beca and Aecom)

Transpower New Zealand Limited

Auckland Transport

Wellington City Council

Precinct Properties

Tainui Group Holdings

Costco New Zealand

Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment

New Zealand Infrastructure Commission – Te Waihanga

Ministry of Defence

West Village Capital Partners

Downer

Work highlights

  • Advising Auckland Transport and Waka Kotahi The New Zealand Transport Agency on Te Tupu Ngātahi (the Supporting Growth Alliance), as part of the Alliance legal team, on route protection of the transportation network required to service the next 30 years of Auckland’s growth – the largest professional services alliance to be established in New Zealand, and the first of its kind in respect of establishing an interrelated transport network in multiple areas.
  • Advised the New Zealand Government Vaccine Strategy Task Force, working with officials from the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE), Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFAT), the Ministry of Health, PHARMAC and the Treasury, on negotiations with the global COVAX facility and advance purchase agreements that will secure a portfolio of COVID vaccines to cover a spectrum of needs for New Zealand’s population, also extending to cover Niue, Tokelau and the Cook Islands – a highly significant part of the government’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Advising Port Marlborough New Zealand on its nationally significant proposal to fully redevelop Port Picton to accommodate New Zealand’s future inter-island freight and passenger services between the North and South Islands.

Buddle Findlay

Buddle Findlay‘s nationwide practice, which spans Wellington, Auckland and Christchurch, provides a comprehensive range of expertise which includes environmental, resource management, climate change and Māori law. Its infrastructure, project finance and energy work is especially noted in the areas of transport and water management/treatment. The firm is also notable for developing partnership agreements with local iwi for infrastructure and energy matters and also advises clients on climate change. Peter Owles heads the projects team and Jennifer Caldwell and Paul Beverley lead the resources management team. Vanessa Evitt represented Waka Kotahi regarding the East West Link Project and and advised on obtaining planning approvals and resource consents, supported by senior associate Mathew Gribben. David Allen advised on the environmental challenges of the reconsenting of a hydroelectric energy project and represented Tararua District Council before the Environment Court. Alanya Limmer and Pat Mulligan  left the firm in 2020 and 2021 respectively.

Practice head(s):

Paul Beverley; Jennifer Caldwell

Other key lawyers:

Peter Owles; Mathew Gribben; Vanessa Evitt; David Allen; Leigh Ziegler

Testimonials

‘The practice is very customer focused. They are very responsive to any requested for information and/or assistance and they keep their clients updated and informed of progress. This is very comforting and reassuring for the client. They are also always accessible and return phone calls very promptly.’

‘David Allen is extremely professional and he has a warmth which puts his clients at ease. He is knowledgeable, practical and is able to see issues from the perspective of his clients. He has the ability to articulate complex legal matters into everyday English.’

‘Strong capability in consenting major infrastructure projects. I value the team’s collaborative approach in working with in-house counsel.’

‘Leigh Ziegler (Senior Associate) – easy to work with, collaborative, hard working, pragmatic, very capable. Jennifer Caldwell (Partner) – highly experienced, good strategic thinker, pragmatic.’

Key clients

Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency

Auckland Transport

Auckland Council

Greater Wellington Regional Council

Hutt City Council

Transpower New Zealand

Genesis Energy

Tararua District Council

Nongfu Spring Co Ltd / Creswell NZ Limited

GMP Pharmaceuticals Limited (GMP) and associated companies TaTa Valley Ltd and Havelock Village Ltd

Bank of New Zealand

Ormat Technologies

Contact Energy

Wairarapa Water

Horowhenua District Council

Central Hawkes Bay District Council

Kapiti Coast District Council

Tauranga City Council

Westpower

Whakatane District Council

Wellington Water

Waikato River Authority

Ministry for the Environment

Local Government New Zealand

Work highlights

  • Acting for Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency and Auckland Transport as legal participants in the Supporting Growth Alliance, a five-seven-year programme of work to identify and obtain approvals for a new and upgraded transport network throughout greater Auckland.
  • Successfully assisted Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency to obtain the necessary designations for the Manawatū Tararua Highway, a project of national and regional significance.
  • Advised Bank of New Zealand in connection with the project financing of the Cardrona Waste Water Treatment Plant.

Chapman Tripp

Chapman Tripp takes on major infrastructure projects for national and international clients, working with traditional and alternative project structures. The firm represents three of the seven defendants in the first litigation in New Zealand regarding liability for climate change damage (environmental and resource management specialist Jo Appleyard  is a lead lawyer on the case). Christchurch-based Ben Williams and Auckland-based Hamish Bolland head the team, while Williams focuses on rural infrastructure and water and nutrient management matters, Bollard is advising on major projects such as a billion-dollar hospital redevelopment. With a broad practice in infrastructure, construction and property law, Greg Wise advised Mercury on the property rights for the Turitea Windfarm, New Zealand’s largest wind farm. The team is supported by Paula Brosnahan, who has years of experience of consents for major projects, consultant Brian Clayton and environmental project management specialist Catherine Somerville-Frost.

Practice head(s):

Ben Williams; Hamish Bolland

Other key lawyers:

Jo Appleyard; Greg Wise; Paula Brosnahan; Catherine Somerville-Frost; Brian Clayton

Testimonials

‘They have an ability to be flexible, try to make the people they deal with feel valued. Observed some good mentoring of junior staff.’

Key clients

Ballance Agri-Nutrients

City Rail Link Limited

Christchurch International Airport

Dairy Holdings Limited

Eastland Group Limited

Fonterra Co-operative Group Limited

Lyttelton Port of Christchurch

Mercury NZ Limited

Ministry of Health: Dunedin Hospital Redevelopment

Ministry of Health: Christchurch Hospital Redevelopment

New Zealand Aluminium Smelters Limited

New Zealand Antarctic Institute

New Zealand Government Departments/Agencies including: Department of Corrections

Ministry of Education, and

Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency

Ryman Healthcare Limited

Silver Fern Farms

Te Runanga O Ngai Tahu

Waimakariri Irrigation Limited

Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency

Winstone Wallboards Limited

Work highlights

  • Advises the Ministry of Health in relation to the development of the New Dunedin Hospital, one of the largest infrastructure projects in New Zealand, with a total value of NZD$1.4bn.
  • Advises Ballance Agri-Nutrients (BAN) as project sponsor on the Kapuni Hydrogen and Windfarm Project, involving the development of a 16MW wind farm at Kapuni, together with an electrolyser to generate green hydrogen for sale to BAN and the transport industry.
  • Assisted The Youth Hub Trust – Te Hurihanga o Rangatahi in obtaining resource consent to construct and operate the Youth Hub.

MinterEllisonRuddWatts

MinterEllisonRuddWatts‘ practice works with teams from other disciplines, such as head of real estate David Gilbert and corporate and commercial consultant Paul Foley, to advise on large-scale infrastructure and construction projects, acting for major construction and developer clients, government entities and funders. For the government it acted also as primary advisor on reform of the resource management system, led by environmental and resource management specialist Rachel Devine, as well as assisting with the Covid-19 response regarding fast-tracking environmental consenting. The firm has a focus on project financings, including private project financings in the irrigation sector, with banking and finance partner Steve Gallaugher providing expertise in acquisition finance and refinancings. Sarah Sinclair brings the construction expertise; she worked on the Christchurch Earthquake rebuild projects with fellow construction specialist Travis Tomlinson. Resource management and environmental law specialist Bianca Tree advises on planning and resource consent strategies and is skilled in dispute resolution including before the Environment Court and High Court. Tom Fail left the firm in December 2020.

Practice head(s):

Rachel Devine; David Gilbert

Other key lawyers:

Paul Foley; Sarah Sinclair; Steve Gallaugher; Bianca Tree; Travis Tomlinson

Testimonials

‘The team is highly competent and works to understand the client’s culture and the outcomes sought. All team members are very approachable and include the client in the legal decisions on the direction to be taken in any case.’

‘The individual team members I deal with are very approachable and always available when needed.’

‘This is a small but highly engaged team that interrelates well both with the client, other project team members and within themselves.’

‘They are motivated to do the best that they can for their client and understand the importance their contribution makes towards the client achieving their business objectives.’

Key clients

Wellington Gateway Partnership

Ministry for the Environment

Department of Internal Affairs

Ports of Auckland Limited

The Crown (through the Ministry of Transport and The Treasury New Zealand)

Southern Cross Hospitals Limited

Ōtākaro Limited

Ministry of Housing and Urban Development

Synlait Milk Limited

Kiwi Property

Work highlights

  • Advising Wellington Gateway Partnership on the delivery of the $1.25bn Transmission Gully motorway PPP project – the first PPP procured roading project in New Zealand.
  • Advising Ports of Auckland to achieve its ambitious target to be a zero emissions port by 2040, including acting on several sustainability initiatives, including a hydrogen demonstration project.
  • Appointed by the Ministry for the Environment as the primary legal adviser to the team that will progress comprehensive resource management system reforms over the next two years.

Simpson Grierson

Utilities company Watercare Services is a longstanding client of Simpson Grierson, with major projects head Michael Weatherall leading the team on the procurement aspects of the billion-dollar Central Interceptor wastewater project. Resource management and environment head Padraig McNamara is advising on its drought response. The firm has a particular focus on advising local councils, regarding matters such as transport and public space infrastructure, freshwater policies and district plan reviews;  James Winchester and Sarah Scott also advise Maori authority Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu on resource-related matters. Bill Loutit advised Auckland Council on resource consents for infrastructure along the Auckland Waterfront, while Matt Conway focus on infrastructure projects and water management Matt; he regularly appears in the Environment Court and High Court and before Boards of Inquiry regarding water supply and waste upgrades and projects involving offshore development drilling and FPSO recovery at the end of life of an offshore oil field.

Practice head(s):

Padraig McNamara; Michael Weatherall

Other key lawyers:

Bill Loutit; James Winchester; Matt Conway; Sarah Scott

Testimonials

‘Provision of sound, commercially astute legal advice.’

‘Some dual qualified staff with actual industry experience. Extensive international experience.’

‘The Construction team provides leading edge advice for all matters relating to our construction project. They focus on outcomes and ensuring our position is represented fairly and that the risk allocation is best for the project. They have excellent interpersonal skills, provide timely and high-quality work and are always available and receptive to our requests.’

‘Sonia Vitas – provides excellent legal advice, understands our needs, is prepared to challenge our way of thinking, is very outcome focused. Provides exceptional quality of work.’

‘Mike Weatherall – very experienced and balanced. Can see the big picture of what we are trying to achieve and what is a good commercial strategy for us to achieve this.’

‘James Winchester is understated but extremely knowledgable and competent. He approaches issues and problems in a relaxed, constructive way and takes time to listen and take on different views. He is highly analytical and ensures the timely delivery of high-quality and valued advice. He and his team are a pleasure to work with.’

‘In my view, Simpson Grierson have the greatest depth and breadth in the area of practice. And that has been the case for many years.’

‘Padraig McNamara is an excellent lawyer, very experienced in both the practice areas of resource management and local government. Very bright, hard working, always available. Bill Loutit, similarly. Both are good strategists in the running of large consenting projects.’

Key clients

City Rail Link Limited

Fletcher Building

Auckland Transport

Watercare Services Limited

Auckland Council

Panuku Development Auckland

Queenstown-Lakes District Council

Christchurch City Council

Tauranga City Council

Ministry for the Environment

Taranaki Regional Council

Kāpiti Coast District Council

Work highlights

  • Appointed in 2016 and continues to advise City Rail Link Ltd (CRLL) as the lead legal advisor for the City Rail Link (CRL) Project, by far the most significant mandate for any construction law team in New Zealand.
  • Appointed in 2017 and continues to advise Watercare Services Ltd on the procurement for the Central Interceptor Main Works project, one of the largest and most complex infrastructure projects ever undertaken in New Zealand.
  • Appointed in February 2018 to advise Auckland Council on the procurement of alliance partners for the construction of the 36th America’s Cup base in central Auckland.

Dentons Kensington Swan

Dentons Kensington Swan‘s Auckland and Wellington-based practice has specialist expertise in the Public Works Act, provided by PWA specialist Matthew Ockleston, who advised the Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency on a multimillion-dollar road project. Nicky McIndoe in Wellington leads the national environment and planning team with a focus on the Resource Management Act; she advised Wellington Water on consents for a flood protection project and worked with special counsel Ezekiel Hudspith to represent Pernod Ricard in Environment Court hearings. Infrastructure project specialist Paul Buetow in Auckland co-leads the firm’s national construction and major projects team, advising on construction contracts for the Waikeria Prison PPP Project and wastewater projects.

Other key lawyers:

Ezekiel Hudspith ; Ana Coculescu

Testimonials

‘Has the breadth and depth to provide support for the most challenging projects. They are responsive to the challenges experienced providing great advice and advocating for the various projects.’

‘Nicky McIndoe – good advocating for projects at resource management hearings; good legal advice.’

‘Ezekiel Hudspith – good advocating for projects at resource management hearings, fast turnaround of document reviews, good legal advice.’

‘Ana Coculescu – fast turnaround of document reviews.’

Key clients

Waka Kotahi New Zealand Transport Agency

Wellington Water Limited

Transpower New Zealand

Heritage New Zealand Pouhere Taonga

Hineuru Iwi Trust

Airways Corporation

Tamaki Regeneration Company

Ghella & Albergeldie Joint Venture

CPB Contractors Pty Limited

Naylor Love

Work highlights

  • Advising Pernod Ricard in appealing a water conservation order which restricted their water supplies necessary for business operation.
  • Advising CPB Contractors as the subcontractor on all legal advice on the Waikeria Prison PPP, a development of a new corrections facility.
  • Represented Wellington Water throughout the consenting of the Pinehaven Stormwater Improvements Project, which will provide significant improvements in flood protection for over 50 vulnerable properties and improvements for 179 properties affected by secondary stormwater flow paths.

DLA Piper New Zealand

DLA Piper New Zealand is adept in all environmental matters from local and national planning and policy to consenting and enforcement matters relating to infrastructure developments. It is also expert in Building Act issues; clients comment that the practice ‘understands the public sector extremely well‘.  Auckland Council is a key client, with the firm acting as its principal legal adviser on designations, resource consents and unitary plans. The team also lead resource management advice for the Department of Corrections. Wellington-based Stephen Quinn heads the practice, bringing 30 years of experience acting for government departments and private companies on resource management, environmental law, and building law issues. Kerry Anderson in Wellington and Diana Hartley in Auckland c0-lead on these matters. Special counsel Emma Manohar provides key support from Wellington for matters such as the Regional Plan for the Wellington region.

Practice head(s):

Stephen Quinn

Other key lawyers:

Kerry Anderson; Emma Manohar; Diana Hartley; Waldo Randal

Testimonials

‘Very friendly and approachable. Listens to their clients and tailors their responses accordingly. Conducts themselves professionally and ethically as a reflection of their clients – no bullying or game playing to “win”.’

‘Friendly and responsive. Always available to talk things through and will be realistic about strategy and likelihood of success. Diana Hartley (Partner) is fantastic! Waldo Randal (Senior Assoc.) is very detailed, thorough and measured. I enjoy working with them when external legal advice is necessary.’

‘The team is one of the best local government teams in New Zealand. They also have extensive experience dealing with the private sector which makes them a very well-rounded team.’

‘Diana Hartley and Stephen Quinn are excellent technical lawyers, understand the public sector extremely well and have excellent political acumen. They think like we think. They are personable and put our staff at ease and are trusted advisers. They are genuinely happy to integrate with our team and are happy to take a light approach where that will be most effective.’

‘DLA’s team is able to draw from significant local, national and international talent to build a team around a project that is the second to none.’

‘The lawyers provide prompt, practical and high quality that gives a clear steer.’

Key clients

Auckland Council

Maungaharuru-Tangitū Trust (MTT)

Greater Wellington Regional Council

Yashili Diary Co NZ Limited

Todd Generation Limited/Todd Energy Limited

Scoter Ventures Ltd

Nelson City Council

Tasman District Council

Upper Hutt City Council

Department of Corrections

Hutt City Council

Work highlights

  • Represented the Department of Corrections seeking a new resource consent to enable it to continue to discharge stormwater from the Whanganui prison into a neighbouring lake system for the continuing operation of a prison. This matter has now been appealed to the Environment Court.
  • Acted for the Wellington Regional Council in reviewing its Regional Plan. Over the last year this has involved almost 12 months of mediation by three members of the team, on 30 appeals and then moved into drafting agreed outcomes and moving on to the hearings of the outstanding appeals.
  • Successfully represented Auckland Council in the Environment Court’s rehearing of the appeals relating to the rural subdivision (following a success appeal to the High Court) provisions including rules in the Auckland Unitary Plan in June 2020.

Russell McVeagh

Russell McVeagh’s resource management and environment heads Daniel Minhinnick, who provides ‘tailored, responsive commercial advice’, and Allison Arthur-Young advise transport entities on planning approvals for high-value projects such as in the rail, airport, ports and water resources areas. Newly promoted partner Simon Pilkinton represents clients creating mixed-use developments in negotiations with councils and gaining plan changes. Corporate advisory specialists Mei Fern Johnson in Wellington and Joe Windmeyer in Auckland advise on transactions in the energy sector, such as for electricity distribution companies, with Johnson additionally advising  on contracts and alliances for infrastructure projects.

Testimonials

‘The team are very commercially focused and understand our business needs and risks in terms of achieving statutory consents. The team are very proactive, industry leading I believe, in understanding, advising on and preparing responses to the ever-changing environmental legislation within NZ. The team is also very personable, very good humoured and a pleasure to work with.’

‘Daniel Minhinnick – an industry leader with an excellent track record on delivering often controversial, nationally significant projects. Very good at communicating complex issues and providing tailored, responsive commercial advice.’

‘Provides high-quality, accurate and pragmatic legal advice and legal documents in a timely, efficient and friendly manner.’

‘Daniel Minhinnick is a trusted adviser that partners with our business to consent projects. His advice and advocacy is strategic, commercial and pragmatic. A real “go to” to overcome hurdles and challenges in the consenting process.’

Key clients

Meridian Energy Limited

Genesis Energy Limited

Trustpower

Tilt Renewables

Mobil Oil

Watercare

Wellington Water

Origin Energy

Vector Limited

WEL Networks

Unison

Kiwirail

The Lines Company

Auckland International Airport

Waste Management

Scentre Group

Woolworths New Zealand Ltd

Panuku Development Auckland Limited

Ports of Auckland Limited

Octopus Energy

Templeton Group

Summerset Group Holdings Ltd

NZ Infra

Work highlights

  • Advising Waste Management (WMNZ) on its resource consent and private plan change applications for the Auckland Regional Landfill, which is intended to provide a solid waste disposal facility to service the Auckland region for the next 50+ years.
  • Advising KiwiRail on the environmental approvals required for the development of a new intermodal freight hub near Palmerston North, necessary to support the movement of freight through the lower North Island of New Zealand in an efficient and sustainable way. The freight hub is intended to be a high-capacity, technologically advanced facility that efficiently connects the rail network with road freight.
  • Advising Stevenson Group (through its subsidiary Drury South Ltd) on a comprehensive industrial and mixed-use development in Drury South. Represented Stevenson Group throughout the plan change process to enable the industrial development and the incorporation of those provisions into the Auckland Unitary Plan, as well as the creation of the Residential Precinct through streamlined special legislation.

Anderson Lloyd

Anderson Lloyd has particular experience in renewable energy projects, with Auckland-based practice co-head Anton Trixl acting for clients in respect of wind farms and hydrogen production projects. The practice also takes on projects in the water sector, such as conservation, storage and irrigation, as well as the mining sector; Christchurch-based Ben Johnston specialises in this area, advising on regulatory approvals. The firm has a nationwide presence, with practice co-head Maree Baker-Galloway providing support from the Queenstown office and local government and resource management specialist Michael Garbett acting from the Dunedin office. The team is also headed by property partner Dan Williams, who frequently leads and supports in energy and forestry projects while Geoff Busch leads on the banking and finance aspects of projects.

Practice head(s):

Anton Trixl; Geoff Busch; Maree Baker-Galloway; Dan Williams

Other key lawyers:

Michael Garbett

Key clients

Tilt Renewables Limited

Hiringa Energy Limited

Rangitata Diversion Race Management Limited

Trustpower Limited

Ballance Agri-Nutrients Limited

New Forests Asset Management Pty Limited

Birchfield Resources

OceanaGold

Barrytown JV Limited

Kahutia LP

Accident Compensation Corporation

Mt Cardrona Valley WWTP Limited

Christchurch City Council

Dunedin City Council

Precinct Properties Holdings Limited

Argosy Property Limited

Work highlights

  • Advising Tilt as lead project counsel on the development of the Waipipi Wind Farm – its first New Zealand project since it demerged from Trustpower in 2016. Having successfully brought the project to financial close in September 2019, Anderson Lloyd continued to advise as the project progressed.
  • Leading Hiringa Energy and Ballance Agri-Nutrients’ joint-venture project to produce green hydrogen using renewable energy. Assisted in the establishment of a project vehicle, drafting and negotiating consultancy agreements, construction contracts, services contracts, a power purchase agreement, operation and maintenance agreements and financing documents.
  • Advising Barrytown JV in respect of a mineral sands mining project on the Barrytown flats, including on overseas investment rules, land owner negotiations, mining access arrangements, employment and commercial contracts, and strategy and technical assessment requirements for securing regulatory and environmental approvals.

Atkins Holm Majurey

Atkins Holm Majurey works exclusively on environmental matters, taking on the gamut of work including resource consents, plan changes, redevelopment of heritage buildings, water conservation orders and issues specific to the oil and gas industries. Environmental and Treaty of Waitangi specialist Paul Majurey works on consents relating to development and infrastructure projects as well as Māori land issues. Helen Atkins advises on resource management, environmental and local government law, chairing hearings on the Resource Management Act. Mike Holm advises on public law matters and represents clients in contentious resource consent and environmental matters relating to development projects. Director Vicki Morrison-Shaw left the firm in September 2021.

Practice head(s):

Paul Majurey; Helen Atkins

Other key lawyers:

Mike Holm

Work highlights

    Chancery Green

    Chancery Green focuses on environment and resource management, with specific experience in gaining consents for projects before the Environment Court and Board of Inquiry. Chris Simmons and Jason Welsh are key contacts together with senior associate Steve Mutch. The firm also advises on mining permits, heritage and historic site protection, and environmental risk management and compliance.

    Practice head(s):

    Jason Welsh; Chris Simmons

    Other key lawyers:

    Steve Mutch

    Tompkins Wake

    Tompkins Wake‘s strength is in its work in the Waikato and Bay of Plenty regions, acting for local councils and private clients on resource consents, designations and district plan reviews and changes. Bridget Parham and Marianne Mackintosh work from the Hamilton head office, with Parham representing councils in hearings on proposed developments and district plan reviews, and Mackintosh representing councils in Environment Court appeals and applications for resource consents. Theresa Le Bas acts from Auckland and Rotorua, advising clients on resource consents for the upgrade of wastewater treatment plants.

    Practice head(s):

    Theresa Le Bas; Bridget Parham; Marianne Mackintosh

    Key clients

    Hamilton City Council

    Otorohanga District Council

    Waikato District Council

    Work highlights

    • Acted for a local authority on the resource consent applications relating to a significant upgrade of a wastewater treatment plant.
    • Acted for a local authority in an Environment Court appeal relating to the environmental impacts of a proposed property development on the local fauna.
    • Represented a local authority in relation to a $1bn rezoning application.

    Wynn Williams

    Praised by clients for its ‘responsive and helpful‘ nature and resources management expertise, Wynn Williams opened a new office in Queenstown in October 2021, headed by new hire Alice Balme. The firm’s client list includes many local councils, which it advises on regional plans and represents in Environment Court litigation in appeals as well as working on judicial review proceedings before the Court of Appeal. Additional work includes water permits, declined resource consents and oppositions to water conservation orders. National managing partner Philip Maw  and contentious resource management specialist Lucy de Latour  lead the practice from Christchurch. Auckland-based Mike Doesburg, who was promoted to partner in April 2021, leads on litigation for both councils and private clients before the Environment Court. Special counsel Michelle Mehlhopt and senior associate Kirstie Wyss in Christchurch provide key support, with Mehlhopt advising local government clients on an Environment Court appeal and on regional planning, and Wyss providing experience in freshwater management.

    Practice head(s):

    Philip Maw; Lucy de Latour

    Other key lawyers:

    Alice Balme; Mike Doesburg; Michelle Mehlhopt; Kirstie Wyss

    Testimonials

    ‘Long-term association with local government, both within different parts of the organisation and with similar local government organisations, means that this practice has significant experience and understanding of the challenges of local government. They understand the multiple drivers that influence local government priorities and the legislative and regulatory constraints.’

    ‘A single partner as primary point of contact (Lucy de Latour) means that is a quick and responsive relationship with the firm. The willingness to listen and understand the issues, constraints and desired outcomes means advice is on point and useful. Excellent knowledge of regulatory requirements means that answers to questions can be provided quickly.’

    ‘Very approachable and always willing to help at any stage of the project. They are a very well balanced team and always have the right person for the job. Ahead of the game when it comes to keeping up with everything that is happening in the world of RMA. They also go the extra mile to make it easy for you to meet with them. Their building and meeting rooms are also top notch. Reception staff are very welcoming and helpful.’

    ‘Michelle Melhopt – always very professional but I have also managed to form a friendship with her over the time we have had her as one of our lawyers. She really knows her stuff and puts a lot of time and effort into her research and background knowledge. Michelle is fantastic at conveying often very complicated messages in an understandable way and within the appropriate context. She understands our role in RMA and provides appropriate strategies and direction for us to take. I would not hesitate in recommending her.’

    ‘Huge RMA expertise.’

    ‘Very responsive and helpful, incredibly organised, and really friendly.’

    ‘Good level of communication, management of resources internally, and staff availability.’

    Key clients

    Canterbury Regional Council

    Southland Regional Council

    Hawke’s Bay Regional Council

    Otago Regional Council

    Northland Regional Council

    Weston Lea Limited

    Reefville Properties Limited

    Queenstown Lakes District Council

    Work highlights

    • Advising the Canterbury Regional Council in relation to judicial review proceedings brought by Aotearoa Water Action group in relation to water bottling.
    • Advising Otago Regional Council on Plan Change 7 to the Regional Plan: Water for Otago which establishes an interim planning framework to manage the replacement of deemed water permits and expiring water permits in Otago
    • Acting for Northland Regional Council in relation to the 24 appeals filed in relation to its decision on the Proposed Regional Plan for Northland. The appeals are in the process of being heard in the Environment Court.

    Lane Neave

    Joshua Leckie leads Lane Neave's resource management and environment team from Queenstown and Christchurch, supported by Christchurch-based Annabel Hawkins, who was promoted to senior associate. The practice, with one partner and two senior associates, advises on resource consents for projects, such as a supermarket and a mixed-use development, as well as the resource management issues of mining operations. An additional area of expertise is district plans, where the firm advises private clients on submissions, negotiations and Environment Court appeals.

    Practice head(s):

    Joshua Leckie

    Other key lawyers:

    Annabel Hawkins

    Testimonials

    ‘Lane Neave lawyers are of course highly skilled and competent, but they are also people that are enjoyable to work and to, quite frankly, spend long work days with. This is important because during the course of a project there could be for example hearings, when you end up spending a lot of intense time with the legal team. ’

    ‘I find Josh Leckie to be easy to work with, I never ever feel like I am asking a silly question, and can explore issues with Josh easily and in a frank manner. I appreciate Josh’s advice because I know that he is never saying something just because he thinks my firm or myself might want to hear it. He says what we don’t want to hear as well.’

    Key clients

    Bathurst Resources Limited and BT Mining Limited

    Cardrona Alpine Resort Limited

    Woolworths New Zealand Limited

    Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu

    Remarkables Station Limited

    University of Otago

    Greater Wellington Regional Council

    Mt Iron Junction Limited

    CPD 2012 Limited

    DHL Global Forwarding (NZ) Limited

    Invercargill Airport Limited

    Work highlights

    • Lead adviser to CPD 2012 Ltd (developer) and Woolworths New Zealand Ltd (supermarket operator) on obtaining resource consent for a new supermarket development in Central Otago.
    • Lead adviser to Mt Iron Junction Ltd with obtaining resource consents from the Environment Court for a large mixed-use development in Wanaka.
    • Represented Cardrona Alpine Resort Ltd in an Environment Court appeal resolution process relating to the rezoning of an additional area of Ski Area Subzone, adjacent to its existing ski field operation.