Tasman & Nelson Sustainable Living Info
Both Tasman District and Nelson City support the Sustainable Living education trust (Future Living Skills programme).
You have arrived at our local info page.
To enable free downloads of the learning guides on eight topics, register just your email and the district name (use Tasman and Nelson option) on the quick form linked here.
For information on living more sustainably - in addition to the page content below: Tasman, click here.
Your two local Council contacts are Nichola Brydon at Tasman Council, email: firstname.lastname@example.org and Karen Lee, Environmental Programs Supervisor at email@example.com (03 546 0200)
Join with others to develop your skills to grow the best vegetables, fruit and herbs for yourself and others. Please make contact using the links below:
- Motueka Community Garden
- Richmond Community Garden
- Brightwater Community Garden
- Takaka Organic Community Gardens (FB page not active recently)
- Golden Bay Community Organic Gardens – & Seed Exchange. GB Sustainable Living Centre have website, run permaculture courses.
- Victory Community Garden, rear of Victory Primary School, Nelson. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org 03 546 8389
- Waimarama Community Garden (website) (FB page) or email email@example.com
Gardening more sustainably –
Tasman Council website (scroll down page, for gardening)
Nelson urban food growing guide (download PDF)
Regional guide on how to grow fruit and nut trees
There are a range of 'edible walks' in Nelson
Permaculture in Nelson Group (P!NG), meet at Free House, fortnightly Tuesdays 7pm Ted Howard 021 2386450 firstname.lastname@example.org or Myk Rushton 0213626564 MeetUp website.
Best Use of Resources
To make the best use of resources we value the resources that we already have and think about the consumer choices we make. If more of the resources we purchase and use are reusable, recyclable and support healthy social structures, we can reduce the need for unnecessary waste. We favour a circular economy.
Great ideas and information can be found around reducing, reusing and recycling on the Nelson Environment Centre website
Electronic Waste is the fastest growing type of waste globally. They contain dangerous substances that can be toxic if not handled correctly. They contain dangerous substances that can be toxic if not handled correctly. Electronic waste is anything with a plug or battery, and these items (with the exception of large whiteware) can be recycled responsibly through Nelson Environment Centre’s e-cycling programme for which there is a charge. A subsidy of up to $20 is available to Nelson and Tasman residents for this e-cycling programme.
In Nelson City for 'glass blue crate' and wheelie bin kerbside fortnightly collections. Remember to exclude soft plastic packaging and bags, as they can't be recycled at present. Nelson City recycling guide. Nelson City Council has a public drop off for recycling at its transfer station in Vivian Place, Nelson – this link has opening hours, charges and information on what is accepted at the transfer station.
Within Tasman, a yellow-lidded mixed recycling bin is provided to each rated residence for recycling card, paper, hard plastics and metal cans; a blue bin is provided for glass collection. These are collected every two weeks. More info on Tasman kerbside collections. (includes downloadable Kerbside Recycling Guide pdf and the timetable).
There are public drop off recycling facilities and waste transfer stations run by Tasman Council at Richmond, Motueka -Mariri, Takaka, Collingwood and Murchison:
- Collingwood Resource Recovery Centre (Transfer Station)
- Motueka Resource Recovery Centre (Transfer Station)
- Murchison Resource Recovery Centre (Transfer Station)
- Richmond Resource Recovery Centre (Transfer Station)
- Takaka Resource Recovery Centre (Transfer Station)
Richmond Resource Recovery Centre
By going through the kiosk, the Richmond Resource Recovery Centre will also take compact fluorescent and energy light bulbs, car batteries, small batteries, left over paint, clean fill or rubble to be recycled. Also whiteware and car bodies can be dropped off for free if you follow requirements. A charge will be incurred if extra removal of items is required. Tyres can be dropped off for a small charge. The metal and sidewalls are removed so these can be then disposed of to landfill. The public drop off area will take used motor oil in sealed containers, empty gas bottles, oil-filled heaters and light and heavy gauge metal - to be recycled.
In Tasman, items can be dropped off or bought from Motueka Recycle Depot (used to be Cee Gee’s) on Robinson Road, Mariri, Motueka. Phone: 03 5267000 or email MotRecycleDepot@kinect.co.nz
Selling and gifting
If you have unwanted used or surplus as-new items, there are many things you can do rather than throwing them away. Online marketplaces for selling items can be found, such as TradeMe or Facebook market place. Op Shops always appreciate good quality items (see here for the map of Nelson Op Shops) as do the Council transfer stations. Other options include: Brightwater community FB, Nelson-Motueka Online Garage Sale , Nelson Buy Sell Swap, and offering free goods via listing at Neighbourly.
Remember that one person’s trash may be another person’s treasure, and Nelson City and Tasman District Councils run Secondhand Sunday every three months so that items can be put out on the pavement or berm for other people to take away
Waste free parenting
Find out about modern cloth nappies: The Nappy Lady
Waste Free events:
Food waste and Green (garden) waste
Keeping this type of waste out of landfill is important to reduce greenhouse gas (methane, carbon dioxide) emissions. For this reason both Councils offer a subsidy to residents for purchase of compost bins, worm farms and bokashi buckets from approved local retailers.
If you’re new to composting the Council have a helpful video for beginners. Remember you should always wear a mask and gloves when handling living compost: see our guide. As well as home composting, there are other options for greenwaste (clippings and trimmings from your garden) which can be found here.
If you cannot recycle or re-use it – use the transfer stations as above in Murchison, Collingwood, Takaka, Motueka (Mariri) and Richmond. All of these wasted resources go to the landfill in Eves Valley !
Rubbish to landfill & hazardous wastes
In Nelson: hazardous waste from your home must be taken to the Transfer Station instead of going out with your rubbish, including:
- Plant and pest sprays
- Waste oil
- LPG bottles
- Household chemicals
- Paints and wood stains
- Fluorescent light bulbs and batteries - refer to the manufacturers' advice
To find out if substances and wastes from households, commercial properties and businesses or farm or rural sites are hazardous and need careful disposal, do check out the Council options and services. Also see Agrecovery.
Love Food Hate Waste
The best ways to keep healthy are also good for our pockets and our environment. Here's some ideas links on making the most of your food budget and reducing waste:
Tasman Love Food Hate Waste webpage
Nelson Love Food Hate Waste webpage.
Nelson Environment Centre run Kai Rescue that collects unsellable but perfectly edible food and distributes it to the community
Nelson Women's Centre - My Grandmothers Kitchen
Water Use and Impacts
Water meter checking - find leaks, in town.
Nelson City tips on water use efficiency.
Recipes for environment-friendly cleaners and household products you can make yourself - from Nelson Council.
Community Resilience & Emergency Preparedness
Civil Defence operations are jointly shared between Nelson City, Tasman District Council, Tasman Civil Defence.
Check out what you need and what you can do to be prepared for any emergencies
Find out about what you can do for a range of different possible emergenies or events to 'get thru' during and afterwards.
Tsunami evacuation area maps are available online
Energy Efficiency at home
Nelson City provides a free service to residents for building design and advice around energy efficiency, including how to keep your home warm and dry. Contact Richard Popenhagen (email: Richard.Poppenhagen@ncc.govt.nz.) Further information can be found at Nelson Eco-building design advisor
Solar power generation (photo-voltaics) is gaining popularity here, in the sunniest spot in New Zealand: do a site search on the internet for the many local companies and seek competitive quotes. NIWA have a calculator to estimate your solar PV potential. You can be grid-connected or at higher cost completely off-grid.(requires batteries and more care in power use). Works best if you have a good area of north-facing roof slope.
Travelling around Nelson and Tasman
Whilst many of us reply on cars for transport, we know that cars are a significant source of greenhouse gas emissions which lead to climate change, as well as polluting our environment. Each moving car releases about 74 million cubic litres of polluted air in its lifetime and pollutants include:
- Smoke particles - soot is worse from desiel than petrol engines
- Carbon monoxide and dioxide, Nitrogen oxide - global warming gases
- Nitrogen and Sulphur dioxides - acidic gases.
- Ozone - combines with sulphur dioxide to make irritating summer smog
- Tiny particles of rubber and brake lining (have often included copper) left on road surfaces, which wash into waterways.
Public transport options:
Other sustainable transport options:
Tasman walking and cycling.
Find maps for great cycling paths to see around the district, on Tasman’s Great Taste Trail at
Extra info on Sustainability in Tasman and Nelson
Enviroschools is a facilitated Programme for schools and early childhood centres choosing a journey for their children and community, of becoming more sustainable. In Tasman this Programme has been supported by Tasman District Council since 2004. Contact the Regional Coordinator and check out more about the Programme
The Small Planet resource for early childhood education is available here. (download PDF for parents of preschoolers)
Check out the Council and Community Libraries in the Tasman District for reading material and videos which may help your efforts.
Similary, Nelson libraries
Nelson Council sustainability at home webpage - for more links.
There are many community groups which voluntarily support environmental efforts in Tasman District Council
Nelson Environment Centre can help you connect with city-based groups
Environmental interest gatherings
TOTSEE – is the Top of the South Environmental Educators group, usually meets once a term.
Access the Learning Materials
Click here to access our online learning materials.
Become a Course Facilitator
Click here to apply to become a Sustainable Living course facilitator.
Existing course facilitators, log in here