Last updated: 3 April 2024

Dam resources

MBIE has a range of resources to help those impacted by the regulations understand their responsibilities.

Update to classifiable dam thresholds

The Government has responded to feedback from farmers that the cost of compliance with the new regulations is not proportionate to the risks smaller dams pose. As a result, changes have been made to the thresholds, meaning that fewer smaller dams will now be impacted by the regulations.

It is important that specialist engineering resources are focussed on dams that represent the greatest risk to people and property downstream, and that owners of classifiable dams can efficiently meet their obligations under the regulations.

The new threshold requirement for dams impacted by the regulations is a height of 4 or more metres and stores 20,000 or more cubic metres volume of water, or other fluid.

The new regulations will no longer apply to dams that are less than four meters high. This aligns better with the building consent threshold, that is, if a dam owner doesn’t need a consent to build the dam, then it won’t need to be classified after construction.

Available resources


Join the Building Performance team for a webinar about the new dam safety regulations which come into force on 13 May 2024. The webinar will cover recent changes to the size of dams impacted by the regulations, and the actions impacted dam owners need to take. There will also be an opportunity to ask questions.

Friday 12 April 2024, at 11am.

Register for the webinar -

Dam safety regulations video

View video transcript

How to measure and calculate dam volume

A resource to help agricultural dam owners calculate the volume of their dam and understand if they are impacted by the regulations.

Measuring and calculating the height and volume of agricultural dams [PDF 8MB]


A visual graphic showing the high-level key actions required by dam owners, engineers, and regional authorities.

Download an infographic summary of the provided dam safety guidance information [PDF 5.2MB]

Guidance document

A detailed guidance document to assist dam owners, technical practitioners, and regional authorities in the performance of their functions and duties, and in the exercise of their powers, if any.

Download the guidance document [PDF 15MB]

On-line learning module

An online interactive course to help dam owners understand if their dam is impacted by the regulations, and to provide more detail around the key actions required by dam owners, technical practitioners, and regional authorities.

Dam safety learning module -

Prescribed forms templates

Form templates that contain information that must be completed/provided by dam owners and submitted to regional authorities, under the regulations.

Dam classification certificate [PDF 89KB]

Dam safety assurance programme [PDF 85KB]

Annual dam compliance certificate [PDF 92KB]

Promotional and educational resources

The resources below can be used and shared by those impacted by the regulations, to help to raise awareness and understanding of the regulations.

The regulations come into force on 13 May 2024.

Article and images

Below are links to an article and images for the dam safety sector to use in their publications and on their webpages and social media platforms. There is also an A4 poster which can be printed.

Article – Preparing for new dam safety responsibilities [DOCX 635KB]

Image for website 800x800px [JPG 450KB]

Image for website 800x420px [JPG 260KB]

Image for social media 1080x1080px [JPG 700KB]

Alternative (ALT) text for images: Building Performance. Text, "Do you own a property with a dam or pond? Check if new dam safety regulations impact you." The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment's logo and the New Zealand Government logo.

Poster (A4) for printing [PDF 1.4MB]

Powerpoint presentation

The presentation covers why the regulations have been made, the Building Act 2004, key elements and timeframes of the regulations and key responsibilities of dam owners, Recognised Engineers and regional authorities.

Dam Safety Regulations 2022 - Powerpoint presentation for sector groups [ZIP 10.2MB]

This information is published by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment’s Chief Executive. It is a general guide only and, if used, does not relieve any person of the obligation to consider any matter to which the information relates according to the circumstances of the particular case. Expert advice may be required in specific circumstances. Where this information relates to assisting people: