Environmental issues

Water quality

Effluent reuse

Effluent irrigation can make a significant contribution to reducing water demand, improving soil condition and reducing the amount of pollutants discharged into our waterways, providing it is managed to protect the environment and public health. Environmental Guidelines: Use of Effluent by Irrigation (effguide.pdf, 504 KB) provides guidance on the beneficial use of effluent and outlines how this can be accomplished in an ecologically sustainable and socially responsible way. This guideline is educational and advisory, not a mandatory or regulatory tool, and does not introduce new environmental requirements.

Indicators of Sustainability for Effluent Reuse in the Intensive Livestock Industries: Piggeries and Cattle Feedlots is available from Australian Pork Limited (APL). This report, resulting from a partnership project between APL, Meat and Livestock Australia and the EPA, identifies indicator parameters and monitoring procedures for individual piggeries and cattle feedlots based on site-specific environmental risk. The information in the document also will be useful to other industry sectors.

National Guidelines for Water Recycling have been released through the National Water Quality Management Strategy and adopted by NSW. These guidelines focus on human health risk assessment and management and are most relevant where there is human exposure to the recycled water such as in urban reuse schemes. Where there are regulatory systems in place that relate to recycling, such as the NSW Water Industry Competition Act,  the regulatory agency should be consulted to clarify requirements.

Page last updated: 29 August 2012