The geothermal resource in the Bay of Plenty is made up of more than 10 geothermal areas, including the Waimangu, Rotorua, Tauranga and Kawerau systems. Some of these are world-renowned for their outstanding geothermal surface features.

Reviewing management of the Rotorua geothermal system

We are now reviewing all geothermal provisions in the Rotorua Geothermal Regional Plan and the Regional Natural Resources Plan.

For more information on these reviews visit out Geothermal review page.

Our geothermal resource includes:

  • Thermal energy contained in rocks deep in the earth and carried by water.
  • Hot lakes, streams and mineralised fluids.
  • Fragile and unique crystalline structures (such as sinter terraces and sulphur crystals).
  • Steaming ground and fumaroles.
  • Boiling mud pools.
  • Hot springs (including geysers).
  • The unique plants, animals and micro-organisms that live there.

Bay of Plenty Regional Council works closely with GNS Science, Waikato Regional Council and the New Zealand Geothermal Association in its work to manage and understand more about the region’s geothermal systems.

Council's geothermal programme includes all elements of geothermal management like science, consents, compliance, community engagement and policy.

The way we manage geothermal systems is guided by policy documents.  A focus for 2018-2019 is a review of existing geothermal planning provisions and the development of system management plans for the Rotorua and Tauranga geothermal systems. See our geothermal news.

Ultimately the programme is about ensuring there is a balance between current use and future development, and to ensure the future sustainability of the resource.