Skip to content

Rule 6 Aerobically treated sewage discharged on-site

http://www.gw.govt.nz/rule-6-aerobically-treated-sewage-discharged-on-site

Rule 6 Aerobically treated sewage discharged on-site

Updated 23 November 2012 12:17pm

The discharge of aerobically composted sewage, or aerobically treated sewage effluent, onto or into land is a Permitted Activity provided

(a) the discharge is more than 20 metres from any surface water body, farm drain, water supply race, or the coastal marine area;

(b) the discharge is more than 5 metres from any neighbouring property boundary; and

(c) for aerobically composted sewage

(i) the sewage originates from a composting toilet system;

(ii) the material has been subject to aerobic composting decomposition for at least 12 months from the last addition of raw sewage;

(iii) for at least 12 months after application, only people operating or maintaining the system have access to the disposal area; and

(iv) compost is not applied to any food crop for animal or human consumption; and

(v) the composted sewage is ploughed into the soil, or buried to a depth of up to 200 mm.

(d) for aerobically treated sewage effluent onto land

(i) the application rate throughout the disposal area is not greater than 5 mm/day;

(ii) the maximum discharge does not exceed 2000 litres per day;

(iii) the carbonaceous five day Biochemical Oxygen Demand concentration in the effluent discharged from the system is not greater than 20 mg/litre;

(iv) the discharge does not cause ponding on or runoff from the disposal area;

(v) the discharge is not by way of spray irrigation or other method that produces any aerosol discharge to air;

(vi) people (except persons involved with maintaining/managing the system) are prevented from entering the disposal area for a period of at least 48 hours following the last application of effluent; and

(vii) stock are prevented from entering the disposal area for a period of at least six months following the last application of effluent; and

(viii) there is no discharge of any effluent to a water body.

(e) for aerobically treated sewage effluent into land

(i) the application rate throughout the disposal area is not greater than 15 mm/day;

(ii) the maximum discharge does not exceed 2000 litres per day;

(iii) the discharge does not cause ponding on or runoff from the disposal area; and

(iv) there is no discharge of any effluent to a water body.

Explanation. This rule allows discharges of well-treated sewage effluent and sewage compost above or below the soil surface. Note that Rule 7 of the Plan allows discharges of all sewage effluent (but not sewage sludge) subject to conditions, but does not allow discharges above the soil surface.

Aerobically composted sewage may be applied onto land in accordance with this rule, but the sewage must not originate from any sewage treatment system other than a composting toilet system. That is, composted sewage from composting toilets, such as those in the Conservation Estate and Regional Parks, may be discharged to land in accordance with this rule, but composted sewage from community systems may not. The reasons for this distinction are given in section 8 of the Plan.

This Rule does not exempt sewage disposal systems from compliance with provisions in a district plan, or requirements imposed under the Building Act, 1991, or the Building Regulations, 1992, or the Health Act, 1956. Compliance with the conditions in this rule means that the discharge from the system can proceed without the need for a resource consent from the Regional Council. The onus will be on the owner of the system to demonstrate that the conditions in this rule will be met. Where the conditions cannot be met, a resource consent will be required in accordance with Rule 8.

The conditions for compliance with Rule 6 (d) are more restrictive than for Rule 6 (e) because sewage discharges onto land can allow transmission routes for disease to become established. The allowable application rate for discharges into land is higher than for discharges onto land. This is to recognise that there would be fewer adverse effects if effluent accumulates in the disposal field of subsurface systems.