Land and Environment Plans

LEP map

A Land and Environment Plan (LEP) sets out how you'll manage your farm's land and environmental strengths and weaknesses. You can attend an LEP workshop and use the LEP Toolkit resources to help you get an LEP in place.

What is an LEP?

A Land and Environment Plan is a tool that guides farmers through a recorded assessment of their farm’s environmental risks as well as land management opportunities.

It involves a stock-take of land, soil and water resources, and results in the development of a personalised written plan identifying potential actions to be undertaken, where they might being targeted, and when they will be implemented.

Why have an LEP?

A well prepared LEP captures stewardship and sustainability as a record showing that measureable actions are being taken to address environmental concerns and to demonstrate good practice. It also provides an understanding of the natural resources on your farm, and allows all those involved with your farm business to understand the plan to manage them for the long-term.

LEP workshops

The best way to complete an LEP is through a Beef + Lamb New Zealand LEP workshop. These are run throughout the country with groups of 10 to 15 farmers. The workshops are facilitated by trained professionals who can provide advice and support if needed and will help you complete a plan in the workshop.

Contact your local extension manager, who can help get a workshop set up.

LEP Toolkit 

Working through the LEP Toolkit gives you a better understanding of the land and environment issues on your farm – and guides you through making a plan to manage them.

The toolkit includes workbooks and guidelines for three different levels of planning. It also includes modules on topics related to farm environment issues, such as:

  • ways to keep stock out of water
  • erosion and sediment management
  • nutrient management.

It aims to help you manage your farm sustainably, through addressing the environmental factors that make your farm unique.

What you'll get out of it

You'll learn how to assess different soil types and land use capability, to identify and develop individual land management units. You can also make a plan to ensure your land is managed sustainably, taking into account the specific soil type, fertility, pasture types, susceptibility to erosion and management practices relevant to your farm.

Download the toolkit

LEP leaflet  (PDF, 1MB)
Explains why you should have a land and environment plan (LEP); and the difference between levels 1, 2 and 3

LEP guidelines level 1 – farm mapping and risk assessment  (PDF, 1.9MB)
You can get started today and complete level 1 in just a couple of hours. Once you've filled in the response plan you will have a level 1 LEP.

LEP guidelines level 2 (PDF, 607KB)
These guidelines build on level 1 and help you develop individual land management units. It usually takes between two and 20 hours to complete. About 25% of farmers should be able to complete a level 2 land and environment plan without any specialist input.

LEP level 2 resource chart (PDF, 134KB)
A downloadable chart for you to print off and fill in.

LEP guidelines level 3  (PDF, 3MB)
Level 3 LEP guidelines build on level 2 and aim to produce a plan comparable to those used by regional councils and quality assurance programmes. This takes about 20 hours to complete and some farmers will need some specialist assistance.

Response plan template  (PDF, 270KB)
Download the response plan template to create a new land and environment plan, or review and change an exisiting plan. You can use this template for any level LEP.

LEP stock exclusion (PDF, 390KB)
The first module in our revised land & environment planning toolkit will help you manage stock around waterways.

Menu of practices to improve water quality: drystock farms (PDF, 400KB)
This menu provides a range of practices for drystock farms, mainly hill country sheep, beef and deer, to improve nutrient management and reduce impacts on water quality.

Trees for the Farm booklet (PDF, 700KB)
This booklet provides information to farmers who are planting poplar and willow trees on their farms, to assist you in gaining the most benefit for your effort.

Overseer Input Template (PDF, 1MB)
This template will help you get together the right information to complete an Overseer nutrient budget. It can be printed out or used as an editable pdf. To complete your Overseer nutrient budget, please contact an appropriate Certified Nutrient Management Advisor. 

LEP, FEMP and FEP - what's the difference?

B+LNZ have also developed farm environment plan templates to help farmers specifically in Canterbury and Hawke's Bay (Tukituki catchment) meet the regulatory needs of their local regional councils.

  • Farm Environment Plan (FEP): Environment Canterbury region
  • Farm Environment Management Plan (FEMP): Hawke's Bay
  • LEP: all other parts of the country.

These templates use the land and environment planning toolkit as a framework, and have been approved by both regional councils.

LEP workshops
See what's coming up near you
Contact us to register your interest in attending a workshop
LEPs - an overview. Learn about the process and hear from farmers who have attended an LEP workshop.
LEP Level 1 workshops - what completing an LEP Level 1 plan means and why the whole farm team should be involved.
LEP Level 2 workshops - what's involved in completing a Level 2 plan and what you'll get out of it.
LEP, FEMP or FEP? Learn about each one and how they're different.
High Country Lakes Catchment Environment Project: LEPs help high country farmers address the unique environmental challenges they face.