Katherine Forward


Katherine is a senior lawyer with extensive experience in all aspects of environmental and resource management law and supports rural and urban clients nationwide. She delivers commercially relevant, and client focussed advice to environmental problems in any context – corporate transactions, development projects, day to day operations, planning/ policy, resource consenting, compliance and climate change considerations.

Katherine is adept at building enduring client relationships, and she is used to leading multi-disciplinary teams. She is a seasoned advocate in all jurisdictions.

Recent highlights

  • Renewal of a suite of resource consents authorising the continued operation of a Regional community wastewater scheme, including the discharge of treated wastewater to the coastal marine area, and disposal of biosolids to land.
  • Advising a joint Council business unit in relation to landfill operations and future Regional waste management options.
  • Representing primary sector industry groups on appeals to the Environment Court against the Southland Water and Land Plan.
  • Urban planning and residential, commercial and industrial rezoning in Canterbury, where tension between the National Policy Statement for Highly Productive Land and the National Policy Statement on Urban Development and the Enabling Housing Supply legislation are relevant considerations.
  • Environmental risk management/ mitigation for a significant land investment portfolio.
  • Wide experience as defence counsel for environmental enforcement investigations/ prosecutions.
  • Irrigation development, and nutrient management in the contentious Mackenzie Basin where landscape values and indigenous biodiversity are relevant considerations.
  • Advising insurers in relation to liability under the Climate Change legislation/ Emissions Trading Scheme.

Katherine's insights

The RMA lives on

28 November 2023

Greater Christchurch Spatial Plan

10 July 2023

Timaru District Plan review

9 December 2022

We're driven by our values

They drive our client relationships and connections with our community, and underpin our achievements.

He tāngata

  • Chair of Board of Trustees at Te Piki Kāhu (Wigram Primary School)
  • Co-leads the summer clerk and graduate recruitment programme in the Christchurch office.


  • Regularly presents tailored education sessions upskilling industry professionals, external management and on-the-ground staff on topical environmental issues


  • Member of the New Zealand Law Society
  • Member of the Resource Management Law Association
  • Member of the New Zealand Institute of Primary Industry Management


“We have worked with Katherine and her team for the last 2 years on a complex and difficult Environment Court case. Over this time, Katherine has created a positive working relationship with us as client. The team approach ensured we always had someone up to speed with our work, that we could turn to if needed.” Carina Ross, Senior Policy Advisor, DairyNZ

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