Waste management planning for significant events

If you’re planning an event with more than 1,000 people outdoors, or more than 5,000 people indoors, you’ll need to submit an Event Waste Management and Minimisation Plan.

Following the introduction of the Solid Waste Management and Minimisation Bylaw 2020, this plan is required for all significant events in Wellington City.

You don’t need to complete a plan if your event is an indoor private function or a regularly occurring recreational activity (such as a weekly sports event).

When to submit your plan

  • For 10,000 people and under: 30 working days before the event.
  • For over 10,000 people: 60 working days before the event.

If you're an event manager for a venue that holds multiple events over the year, please get in touch with us regarding your submission requirements prior to these deadlines.

Even if your event doesn't reflect these sizes, we recommend organisers of all event sizes complete a plan for their own purposes to ensure their event follows best practice.

Who should submit the plan

The event manager is responsible for submitting the plan and getting the Council's approval.

Alternatively, you could use an event waste management company to oversee waste at your event, and submit the plan on behalf of the event manager.

Event waste management companies in Wellington City include:

Creating your plan

As a condition of the Waste Plan approval, you’ll be required to provide the Council with a waste analysis report after your event.

1. Before you start, read the Reducing waste at your event guide (1.80MB PDF)

2. Make sure you:

  • know the types of waste your event will generate
  • plan how to incorporate reusables into your event, if possible
  • book a contractor(s) to collect the rubbish, recycling and organics from your event
  • book bins to collect waste and recycling – we have free bins and hoods you can borrow
  • have provisions in place for diverting food waste – we expect significant events to divert food waste from landfill, if feasible; we can decline approval of a plan if food waste diversion cannot be provided for
  • comply with the regional event packaging guidelines (1.06MB PDF). You must comply with these guidelines if:
    • ­you are running a significant event on Wellington City Council-owned land, and/or
    • the material will be composted at Capital Compost. 
  • have plans in place to communicate packaging requirements with vendors and stall holders
  • know the number of public litter bins within the events site boundary
  • have the site plan ready, which includes location of:
    • waste stations
    • waste sorting and/or storage facilities
    • signage
    • site entry and exit points
    • food and beverage vendors
    • merchandise vendors
    • location of all public litter bins within the event site
    • the route collection vehicles will use to access the waste storage facilities during the event, if applicable.

Write and submit your plan

Submit your plan


Post-event waste analysis report

After the event, you must provide the Council with a waste analysis report. We are particularly interested in whether the waste generated was consistent with the estimates provided in the approved Event Waste Management and Minimisation Plan.

At a minimum, this report will include a breakdown of:

  • The types of waste generated by the event: Including compost, co-mingled recycling, glass and rubbish. 
  • The amounts of waste (by type) generated by the event: These should be provided in kilograms if possible. Use our conversion table (120KB PDF) to help you convert your waste from litres to kilograms .
  • The amount of waste avoided and diverted: We would like to know whether you met your waste diversion targets, and how much waste was diverted. Please give this figure as a percentage of total event waste.
  • The waste management facilities used to recover, recycle, treat or dispose of your waste.
  • Any additional relevant information: For example, an explanation of any unforeseen changes made to the Waste Plan during the event.

Contact us

If you need help, contact our team: wasteplans@wcc.govt.nz