The Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) and the Ministry for the Environment (MfE) are working to improve nutrient management knowledge and assessment tools available for use by farmers and growers. This work supports the Government’s Essential Freshwater and Climate Change objectives.
Find out more about our work to protect freshwater health
Read about climate change and the primary industries
A technical review of the Overseer model began in early 2020. The findings were released in August 2021.
Review process timeline
December 2018: The Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment published the report Overseer and regulatory oversight: Models, uncertainty and cleaning up our waterways.
March to October 2019: Development of terms of reference in consultation with Overseer Ltd and Overseer owners. In May 2019 the Parliamentary Environment Committee initiated a joint briefing with the Primary Production Committee and held a joint hearing to consider the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment’s report.
November 2019 to March 2020: Science Advisory Panel selection process and contracting.
February 2020: Project Review Scope and terms of reference finalised.
Overseer whole-model peer review by independent experts: Project overview including panel terms of reference [PDF, 298 KB]
March 2020: Scientific Advisory Panel membership finalised. An expert panel of 8 members was selected after a rigorous process involving the Prime Minister's chief science adviser and the chief scientists from MPI and MfE.
March 2020 to July 2021: The Scientific Advisory Panel undertook a significant number of workshops and meetings considering multiple verbal and written presentations. See workshop content below.
October 2020 to February 2021: Draft report provided to Overseer Ltd and Overseer’s owners for fact-checking.
April 2021: MfE and MPI convened an Expert Advisory Group panel to understand the implications of Science Advisory Panel report findings for regional council compliance and planning purposes.
30 June 2021: The Scientific Advisory Panel completes its final report.
Scientific Advisory Panel Overseer model peer review [PDF, 4 MB]
July 2021: Government reviews the Science Advisory Panel’s report.
August 2021: Government publishes its response.
Government response and recommendations [PDF, 846 KB]
Workshop 1: March 2020
Presentations from Overseer Limited, AgResearch, and regional councils explaining how Overseer works and is used.
Workshop agenda [PDF, 1.2 MB]
Overseer demonstration [PDF, 3 MB]
Environment Canterbury use of Overseer [PDF, 1.7 MB]
Use of Overseer by Waikato Regional Council in the Lake Taupo and Waikato River catchments [PDF, 1.9 MB]
Stocktaking report: Overseer whole-model peer review [PDF, 1.4 MB]
Summary of existing guidance to regional councils on best practice use of Overseer in the regulation of diffuse nutrient pollution [PDF, 2 MB]
Who to contact
If you have questions about Overseer, email email@example.com