Installation of Effluent Disposal Systems

The City’s Health Service is responsible for ensuring that onsite effluent disposal and liquid waste water is managed efficiently and safely to protect the public and environmental health of the community.

In areas of the City not serviced by reticulated sewerage, all onsite effluent disposal systems must be installed, maintained and serviced to prevent the transmission of disease and minimise impact to the environment.

Any person intending install an onsite effluent disposal system must complete an application to construct or install an apparatus for the treatment of sewage.
Applications must be submitted to the City’s Health Service with the prescribed fee.

Decommissioning effluent disposal systems

In accordance with the Health (Treatment of Sewage and Disposal of Effluent and Liquid Waste) Regulations 1997, if a premises has connected to sewer, the owner of the premises is only required to decommission the effluent disposal system if:

  • if there is a material change in the use of the premises, not more than 60 days after the change of use occurred
  • if there is a change of owner, not more than 60 days after the change of owner
  • if foundations for a building on the premises are built closer than 1.2 metres to the system or a building is to be constructed above the system.

Decommissioning of a system involves:

  • emptying the septic tanks or aerobic treatment unit in accordance with the Environmental Protection (Controlled Waste) Regulations 2004
  • removing the tank or unit or if not practicable breaking up the base of the tank or unit
  • backfilling the system with clean fill.

Drainage plumbing diagrams can be found on the Building Commission's website.