Land application of treated municipal effluent

The land application of Treated Municipal Wastewater (TMW) is a preferred option over wastewater discharge into waterways or the ocean, where it can exacerbate eutrophication and / or toxic algal blooms. The concentration of plant nutrients in the TMW can reduce or eliminate the need for mineral fertilisers such as superphosphate, which contain elevated concentrations of toxic cadmium, fluorine and uranium that can accumulate in soil.

In 2014 Christchurch City Council (CCC) approached CIBR scientists at Lincoln University regarding the possibility of irrigating TMW from Duvauchelle onto the local golf course, a paddock using planting with native vegetation such as mānuka, kānuka and others. The aim of this project was to determine the suitability of soils from the Duvauchelle golf course and Takamatua peninsula to receive treated municipal wastewater from the Duvauchelle Wastewater Treatment Plant and how this would effect factors such as nitrate leaching, the change in the survival and growth of NZ native vegetation.

Study Outcomes

Field sites at Duvachelle

From left: Field site at year 1 and field site at year 3

  •  The promising results led to the set up of a full-scale experiment for irrigating TMW into 10 hectares of native vegetation situtated in Levin to learn more go head to The Pot

Last modified: