Imogen Edwards

BA, LLB, Associate

Imogen is an associate in the Resource Management and Environmental team and practices in the related area of local government.  

Imogen specialises in all areas of resource management, environmental, and local government law, with particular expertise in official information requests, water conservation orders, and urban development and land-use planning.  Imogen has a particular interest in historic heritage issues.
Imogen advises a range of local authority clients in respect of both resource management and biosecurity planning processes, including in relation to freshwater management and air quality management, and the development of pest management plans.  This includes advising throughout the development, hearing process, and subsequent appeals to the Environment Court and High Court.  Imogen also advises on consultation processes under the Local Government Act 2002, and official information disclosure obligations.
Imogen also acts for private clients on a range of resource consent matters, including in relation to historic heritage, digital signage, and stormwater, and in relation to district plan review processes.

Imogen is recognised by The Legal 500 Asia Pacific 2020 for her work in Projects and Resource Management.  One client comments "Imogen... is incredibly organised, always available and I was really impressed with the speed and quality of work.”
"I enjoy working within a collaborative team, providing strategic legal advice to assist clients in achieving desired outcomes."

Recent Projects

  • Appearing as junior counsel in the Environment Court in relation to a resource consent application to erect a dwelling beyond the existing urban area and greenfield priority areas identified in the Canterbury Regional Policy Statement.

  • Advising local authorities on the disclosure of information and procedural requirements under the Local Government Act 2002 and the Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act 1987.

  • Appearing as junior counsel for the Hawke’s Bay Regional Council before the Special Tribunal on an application for a proposed Water Conservation Order on the Ngaruroro and Clive Rivers.

  • Acting for Canterbury Regional Council in declaration and enforcement order proceedings lodged by Forest & Bird relating to clearance of indigenous vegetation.

  • Advising regional councils on the development of plans under the Biosecurity Act 1993 including the Canterbury Regional Pest Management Plan.

  • Obtaining resource consent for the property owner in relation to works on scheduled heritage items.

  • Advising on local authority obligations and the application of the National Policy Statement on Urban Development Capacity 2016.

  • Obtaining official information from local authorities on behalf of private clients.

  • Advising Canterbury Regional Council on the Christchurch Replacement District Plan review, including in relation to indigenous biodiversity and airport noise, and the subsequent High Court appeals.

  • Acting as junior counsel for Canterbury Regional Council on the Hurunui District Plan review appeals.

  • Advising Canterbury Regional Council during the hearing of the Canterbury Air Regional Plan and resolution of the subsequent High Court appeals.

  • Advising on local authority obligations and the application of the National Policy Statement for Freshwater Management 2014.

  • Advising on the enforcement of district plan provisions and the Property Law Act 2007 in relation to a neighbour tree dispute.

  • Obtaining resource consents to erect digital signage around Christchurch.

  • Undertaking environmental due diligence in respect of residential and commercial properties.

Recent Articles


Local Government – Urgent amendments to legislation to deal with COVID-19 pandemic

This update focuses on the changes to the LGA and the LGOIMA, in relation to holding meetings through audio or audiovisual link, and amendments regarding public access and posting of agendas.

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Planning for successful cities – a proposed National Policy Statement on Urban Development

The Government has announced consultation on a new National Policy Statement on Urban Development, intended to replace the National Policy Statement on Urban Development Capacity 2016.

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Further changes to the management of freshwater in NZ

The Government has announced its plan to tackle water quality issues in New Zealand, with a focus on stopping further degradation and loss, reversing past damage, and addressing water allocation issues.

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Rating powers of local authorities

The Court of Appeal recently issued its judgment in Northland Regional Council v Kaipara District Council [2018] NZCA 63, being the latest development in a longstanding argument regarding the validity of rates set by the Northland Regional Council.

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Legislative update: restoring the "four aspects of well-being"

The Government has introduced two new Bills which are due to have their First Reading next week: the Local Government (Community Well-being) Amendment Bill, and the Local Electoral Matters Bill.

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A new infringement system for conservation related offending

The Conservation (Infringement System) Bill is currently with the Environment Committee and is open for submissions until Friday, 6 April 2018. The Bill provides central and local government agencies with infringement notices as another tool for dealing with lesser offences under conservation legislation.

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National Environmental Standards for Plantation Forestry

The much anticipated National Environmental Standards for Plantation Forestry Regulations were notified in the NZ Gazette on 3 August 2017. These Regulations, which come into force on 1 May 2018, establish a new nationwide consenting regime for plantation forestry activities.

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Changes to freshwater management

Today the Government announced a suite of further freshwater management reforms. The headline change is a new target that 90 per cent of New Zealand's lakes and rivers meet swimmable water quality standards by 2040.

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Court confirms wide-ranging rating powers

The recent decision of the High Court in Meridian Energy Company v Wellington City Council [2017] NZHC 48 has reaffirmed the broad discretion and wide-ranging powers of local bodies to set rates under the Local Government (Rating) Act 2002 (Rating Act). The Court has also confirmed that both general and target rates can be set differentially, within the one rating unit, depending on the use to which the land is put.

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Have your say on the Draft New Zealand Energy Efficiency and Conservation Strategy

The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) is calling for submissions on the recently released Draft New Zealand Energy Efficiency and Conservation Strategy 2017-2022.

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Resource Legislation Amendment Bill and the NPS on Urban Development Capacity

Environment Minister Dr Nick Smith recently announced that the Māori Party will support the Resource Legislation Amendment Bill enabling the Bill to progress through the Parliamentary process. These reforms were first introduced in November last year and Wynn Williams published an article regarding the proposed reforms.

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A New Marine Protected Areas Act: Does More Flexibility Result In Better Protection?

In January 2016, the Ministers for Primary Industries, Conservation, and the Environment announced plans to improve the management of New Zealand's oceans by implementing a revised system of marine protected areas designed to improve and build upon management systems which already exist.

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6 months or bust

The new six-month consent processing time frames will be introduced on 3 March 2015 when Part 3 of the Resource Management Amendment Act 2013 (the "Amendment Act") comes into force. This will have a significant impact on the resource consent process, which has been overhauled in an attempt to make the entire procedure more efficient and provide a degree of certainty to applicants. Although these amendments were originally proposed to hasten "medium-sized projects" the amendments now apply across the board to all resource consent applications.

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  • Canterbury Women's Legal Association

  • Young Resource Management Legal Association

  • Resource Management Law Association
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