Risk Assessments

An assesment method / framework


Risk assessment is a key process in the management of risk.  It provides a process for the consistent and considered assessment of both the likelihood and consequence of a risk.


Risk assessment is a step in a risk management procedure. Risk assessment is the determination of quantitative or qualitative value of risk related to a concrete situation and a recognized threat (also called hazard).

Risk management is the general term used to describe the processes and systems used to deal with risk. So understanding risk management, not surprisingly, requires assessment of risk. 

Risk is usually characterised by describing both the effects or consequences and the chance of experiencing those consequences (known as "likelihood").  The level of any particular risk can be expressed by combining the two considerations (i.e. the potential consequence in terms of the objectives, and the likelihood of those consequences being experienced).

Risk assessment can be used to characterise the nature an magnitude of risk to aspects of environment, human health, or infrastructure and property.

A risk assessment is a careful examination of the things that could cause harm or damage to better understand the possible effects and what the likelihood of impacts occurring are.

Risk assessment and risk management provides a disciplined and structured way of describing the risk,  working out what might affect that, how likely it is, defining what you want to achieve (objectives), deciding what systems and protocols to put in place to address those situations, and putting them in place. 

State of Development Please Select

Development Contact


Outcome Areas Economic, Environmental, Social
Management Domains Natural Hazards, General
Steady State or Dynamic Unknown

Input & Output Data


Open/Closed Source Please Select

User Information

User Interface Please Select
Ease of Use Please Select

Technical Considerations

Linkages to other Models

Envirolink Tools:

- Risk-based Land Use Planning for Natural Hazard Risk Reduction

- Defining coastal hazard zones for setback lines

RiskNZ professional body - RiskNZ Website

A framework for risk assessment of contaminated sites, to provide information resources relevant to New Zealand assessors, auditors or reviewers  - http://contamsites.landcareresearch.co.nz/

Ecological risk toolbox - USEPA: https://www.epa.gov/ecological-risk-assessments-era

Risk Assessment - Wikipedia Link



Key References

USEPA Risk Characterisation Handbook: http://www.epa.gov/spc/pdfs/rchandbk.pdf

Associated Case Studies

Risk Assessment - Marine Oil Spill

The study was carried out with the goal of guiding the management of oil spill response planning in New Zealand.


Other Key Case Studies

The influence of soil drainage characteristics on contaminant leakage risk associated with the land application of farm dairy effluent (2009): AgResearch Report Prepared for Environment Southland

RISK ANALYSIS PROCEDURES Version 1 - Biosecurity New Zealand, April 2006. Approved by: Debbie Pearson, Director Pre-Clearance, Biosecurity New Zealand

A proposed conservation weed risk assessment system for the New Zealand border.  SCIENCE FOR CONSERVATION 208, Department of Conservation, Wellington, New Zealand; 2002. Peter A. Williams, Aaron Wilton and Nick Spencer http://www.doc.govt.nz/documents/science-and-technical/SFC208.pdf