The country's last battery recycling plant shuts down for good on Saturday after nearly half a century.
Exide Technologies, which has operated in the Lower Hutt suburb of Petone for 47 years, has submitted a clean-up plan to the regional council.
The clean-up could take up to six months and will involve dismantling machinery and decontaminating the building.
Council environmental regulation manager Al Cross says lead dust - a remnant from the used lead acid batteries recycled at the plant - could be stirred up and escape into the air.
He says the council is looking closely at how Exide will minimise the spread of lead.
The council is expected to grant consent for the clean up by late April.