A better approach to managing wastewater overflows
Scratch the surface of any town or city, and you’ll find infrastructure and systems servicing it. With growth, there is constant pressure for those systems to keep meeting the increased needs of the population.
To better serve its owning councils and their communities, Wellington Water wanted to move from a reactive approach to wastewater network overflows (WNO) and instead apply a catchment wide prioritisation process to progressively reduce the frequency of overflows. An overflow occurs when the wastewater system is overloaded during wet weather events and flows into the environment. This creates clear potential hazards, and Wellington Water engaged our team to help implement an approach to control wastewater overflows for the catchments of each of its four wastewater treatment plants.
Our first step was to seek resource consent approvals for the overflows that occur. In addition to identifying the location of overflows, the applications assess potential effects on the environments. They also provide a framework to resolve adverse effects by development of a WNO reduction plan and convening a collaborative committee to manage the overflow reduction process.
We’ll continue to provide advice for resource consents as they’re progressively rolled out.
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