Sewage treatment

Watercare continues the blame game

Watercare appears to be toeing the line of its paymaster Auckland Council who want to continue the blame game regarding housing supply.

Not willing to concede that the Council have stuffed Auckland they are trying desperately to blame everyone – from landowners to property developers – instead of accepting responsibility. Talk about being sensitive.

The property industry and I have been saying for a while that the issue is Council refuse to build the infrastructure and are using sewers, potable water and roads to stymie the expansion of Auckland. Some weeks back I pointed out that there is now only capacity for 45,000 dwellings to connect to the infrastructure.

So what does Auckland Council do? They shove Watercare out to pitch a story about expenditure that’s over a long time frame and to tell a fat pork pie.

Most of the article is talking up a storm about infrastructure works that replace and improve the stuffed existing infrastructure servicing areas of Auckland. It’s not for new areas. It’s all the deferred maintenance and asset management playing catch-up with a bit more capacity to allow for more apartments in certain areas.

Like new big sewer mains that connect central Auckland suburbs back to Mangere and a Hunua water connection that terminates at the water tank in Ponsonby. They are things in places where people already live, not where the city needs to be growing into, like the edges of the city.

Watercare Services is catering for 195,000 new Auckland dwellings in the next decade, and is working to expand the fresh and waste water networks to cope with this growth.

But Raveen Jaduram, Watercare chief executive, admits the organisation does not really expect that many dwellings to be built.

“The actual number will be significantly less but we’re catering for that bigger number. We have to be ahead of the growth so we built infrastructure well before it’s required,” he said. ? Read more »

Dodgy ratbag council still failing to hold another dodgy polluting council to account

This is ironic, the Central Hawkes Bay District Council is still in breach of sewage discharge permits more than 10 years after the issue was highlighted and despite stringent testing and more than $6 million on a new waste treatment system.

Worse still it is the Hawkes Bay Regional Council, who want to turn the Tukituki river toxic with their own plans who are failing to hold the CHB District Council to account.

The Central Hawke’s Bay District Council is failing to clean up its wastewater plant which now breaches resource consent and discharges dangerous levels of bacteria into rivers.

Hawke’s Bay Regional Council resource-use manager Wayne Wright said the results were in and the facility had shown no improvement after testing was conducted on December 18 last year. “This means CHB District Council is now non-compliant with its resource consent.”

Last month Hawke’s Bay Today revealed a HBRC report which showed “serious concerns” with the redeveloped $6 million wastewater plant.

The study found, despite the recent upgrade, that harmful bacteria and wastewater were being released into the Tukituki River at unacceptable levels. HBRC said “urgent action” was required after raising concerns the nutrient Amm.N and SRP and E.Coli bacterium had now exceeded the limits.

Resource consents regulating the discharge of wastewater from the plants were changed on October 1, 2014, and required a significantly higher standard of wastewater.

Mr Wright said HBRC was now working with CHBDC to rectify the problem and to provide a timeframe for compliance.

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