Mobile Phone Sites

To ensure all New Zealanders have access to better value mobile products and services, we are continuing to build our nationwide network, which not only provides our customers with great coverage, but also caters for future growth as consumer demand increases.

Our network

At the heart of our business is a sophisticated network of mobile phone sites. These sites are low-powered radio technology which works by transmitting and receiving signals using radio frequency (RF) waves. The radio waves they use are the same as those used by cordless phones, baby monitors and radio controlled toys.

Site selection

2degrees operates its own network and has rights to radio spectrum that only it can use, so in most cases 2degrees needs its own physical equipment to deliver services to its customers.

When choosing a location for our equipment, we always try to select and design a site that will have the least amount of impact on the community and the environment.

Providing good network coverage is a key consideration when selecting a site and sometimes that limits where we can put our equipment. As a rule, mobile phone sites need to be near where mobile devices are to provide service.

Wherever possible, we look to co-locate on an existing mobile phone site, build on private land, reserves, industrial areas or commercial land before we look at residential locations. If we do have to build in residential locations, we make sure we try fit in with the local streetscape.

This process is covered under the Resource Management Act (RMA).

Under the 2016 National Environment Standard (NES) for Telecommunications Facilities, we may build, manage and upgrade a number of types of mobile phone site without a resource consent as long as we meet strict criteria around radio frequency emission levels, size, noise and positioning. This covers many areas inside and outside of the road reserve, on private and public land. We often send information regarding these criteria to the Council for its approval. The NES can be viewed here:

mfe.govt.nz/rma/legislative-tools/national-environmental-standards/national-environmental-standards-0

Where the NES doesn’t apply or is overridden by local council rules, we will always make the necessary applications and provide the necessary information to your local Council to ensure our facility is constructed and operated in a compliant way. When we make an application for resource consent to Council, the Council decides whether the application should be non-notified, limited-notified or publicly notified.

Non-notified consent:
We have permission to start building as long as we meet the conditions of the consent. However we will still advise those in the direct area at least 20 days prior to work beginning to ensure everyone is informed.

Limited-notified consent:
The application will be communicated to a select group of people that the Council believes could be adversely affected by the application. Based on the submissions the Council receives will sway the decision of whether consent is granted or not.

Publicly –notified consent:
The application will be communicated to the wider community in writing and by public notice. Anyone can lodge a submission. Based on the feedback the Council receives, it then decides on whether to grant consent or not.

Community Awareness

We are committed to ensuring the community is fully informed of any new equipment we intend to install prior to work commencing.

We notify residents and businesses prior to construction commencing and also advise organisations such as schools and day cares in the immediate area.

Health and Safety

Our equipment is safe and fully complies with the stringent standards set by the New Zealand Ministry of Health. The Ministry specifies the safe radio frequency emissions and exposure standards within which telecommunications companies must operate. These standards are in line with the recommendations made by international authorities including the International Commission on Non-Ionising Radiation Protection (ICNIRP) and the World Health Organisation. You can find out more at the Ministry of Health website on non-ionising radiation here:

health.govt.nz/our-work/radiation-safety/non-ionising-radiation

Scientists have been studying the effects of radio waves on people for many years. Thousands of independent studies have been conducted into the effects of radio waves from mobile phones and towers. The consensus of international scientific opinion is that mobile phone sites are safe if operated within approved safety standards.

2degrees undertakes regular testing of its sites to meet compliance and to provide more information to interested people.

Contact us

For further information on our network build programme, call us on 0800 718 000 or email: community@2degrees.nz