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Waipukurau Wastewater ImprovementsTe whakahoutanga o ngā Wāhi Rāwekeweke Wai Para i Waipukurau me Waipawa

Waipukurau Wastewater Improvements

Waipukurau Treatment Plant Upgrades

This project website will provide updates on the progress of the wastewater treatment plant upgrades as we progress towards a new solution.

You can click on the drop down links below for relevant updates by section.

Learn more about the proposed future of Waipawa, Otane and Waipukurau's Wastewater.

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Dissolved Air Flotation System (DAF) Installation
Waipawa & Waipukurau Sludge and Dry Solids Removal

Update - 13 December 2019

Council has committed to commencing stage 1 of the Otane to Waipawa Wastewater pipeline in 2020.

Fulton Hogan will deliver this work on completion of the water project - council expects with the budget available in the current LTP to complete approx 3.5km of wastewater pipeline.

Further to this work, council are currently working on the packaging the overall project together to take to the community for consultation as part of LTP 2021. Prior to this council project team are working on earlier communications and expect to commence bringing this to the community in the early part of 2020.

Update - 12 November 2019

Minor improvement works are progressing well, with at a high level the following activities in development;

  • Methodology for floating wetland removal
  • Minor improvements to the inlet, data monitoring, septage screening at Waipawa WWTP
  • Clearing out of dried sludge area at Waipawa WWTP

Early 2020 will see this work continue, and process improvement work start at Waipukurau WWTP.

Update - 10 September 2019

Following additional review time required between both parties, we lodged our environment court response on Tuesday 10th September 2019 - in advance of our revised deadline of Friday 13th September 2019.

We now shift to evaluating the future of the Otane Wastewater treatment plant and confirming whether we commence a wastwater conveyance pipeline following the completion of our water project.

We are also working on the minor improvements to all three plants to ensure the plants are operating to compliance conditions whilst the major upgrades are being undertaken, this involves network flow reduction through infiltration and inflow (I&I) studies, sludge removal, wetland removal, process improvements, overhaul of treatment equipment and other improvements over the next 2 years.

We will provide updates on these improvements seperately.

Update - 26 August 2019

Council has successfully purchased a section of land on Walker Road in Waipawa, earmarked as our future land disposal site.

Following a period of due diligence where expert advisers undertook tests on the land for suitability as a disposal site - we acquired this property that was publicly for sale in late August 2019.

Update - 21 June 2019

Long term so­­­lutions to resolve Central Hawke’s Bay wastewater challenges have made significant progress as the Central Hawke’s Bay District Council (CHBDC) endorsed a report yesterday outlining a package of solutions in response to Environment Court Orders for the Waipawa Wastewater Treatment Plant (Waipawa WWTP). 

The report is being taken to the Hawkes Bay Regional Council and the Environment Court next week in response to supplementary orders made in July 2018.

Councillors offered strong support for the report which goes beyond just managing consent compliance for Waipawa and instead presents long term solutions for the way wastewater is managed across the entire district.

The report outlined the process CHBDC followed to develop the proposed solutions including community reference group engagement to develop solution options; significant scientific and engineering research; funding and affordability assessments; interim improvements; and consultation with key stakeholders.  

Long term, the community vision for this project is to treat effluent in a sustainable way that creates a resource, protects the environment, and continues to do so for generations to come. The report recommends a staged approach to delivering this long term solution which will go back out for community consultation as the design, investigation and funding options progress.

Monique Davidson, Chief Executive for CHBDC said: “This is a huge step forward for this project which focuses on intergenerational, long term solutions for how we manage wastewater in Central Hawke’s Bay. 

“The council committed to investing in this process and went through rigorous analysis and community engagement to come up with the best practical solutions to remove waste from our rivers.  This isn’t an overnight fix, but a package of long term solutions that will benefit our communities for generations to come.”

The report will go to both the Hawke’s Bay Regional Council on Wednesday 26 June and then to the Environment Court by 28 June.

Update - 28 March 2019

Please find a link to the community survey outcomes report for the survey undertaken for this project in Dec 2018 and Jan 2019.

Update - 21 February 2019

The community reference group met for the fifth time on 5th February 2019 to further evaluate options and solutions, new members joined the community group to further strengthen representation and the group is refining options against our criteria. The experts and CHBDC will now go away and package up some of the options for further consideration and agreement on the solution to progress through to BPO.

WWTP Criteria v OptionsWWTP Discharge Options

Update - 4 February 2019

Below is a brief snapshot of the findings from the survey conducted in Dec 2018 and Jan 2019, CHBDC is currently working on producing a full report with the findings, and this will be released early March 2019.

WWTP Survey Results ValuesWWTP Survey Results Demographics

Update - 18 December 2018

Following on from our media release in the CHB Mail on the 20th Nov 2018 regarding the future of our wastewater treatment plants, Central Hawkes Bay District Council is investigating options for improved wastewater treatment and discharge schemes for the communities of Otane, Waipawa and Waipukurau.

To help us make the right decisions we asked what was important to you
A survey was conducted in January 2019 with results due to be publicised by the end of Feb 2019.

This is the first step in our consultation process, there will be more opportunities to share your views next year.

Update - 20 November 2018

This media release can be viewed in the CHB Mail on Tuesday 20th November 2018.

It serves to inform the community on the progress of the Wastewater treatment plant project involving the Waipukurau, Waipawa and Otane plants.

Council are currently working with the community through a reference group, to establish values and criteria to inform decision making.

Council welcomes feedback on the attached update and is working with the reference group to ensure that any decision making is aligned with the communities.

Council will provide further opportunity for feedback and discussion as the project progresses and as council works towards reaching the best option for the future of the plants and wastewater discharge and treatment by June 2019.”

Update - 6 November 2018

The third meeting of the Reference Group was held on 15th October 2018. A key aim of the meeting was to identify values that Group members consider important for wastewater management in the Central Hawke’s Bay area. The issues identified will form the basis for assessing which wastewater management (treatment and discharge) options to further investigate.

Another focus at the meeting was understanding the regional council consenting process. We had a presentation from HBRC on the RMA process and in particular the drivers and important points that relate to assessing and granting a resource consent in relation to a discharge.

The group has another meeting planned for the 13th November 2018 to further flesh out the criteria and to start to refine options against this criteria.

In conjunction council is presenting to Tai whenua in November and will continue working with local iwi.  Council also plans to release a communication on the project this month via our media channels and welcomes any feedback as council works toward a best practicable option for the Waipukurau, Waipawa and Otane WWTPs.

Update – 27 September 2018

A third reference group meeting is planned for Monday 15th October 2018, the focus at this meeting will be identifying key success criteria for wastewater treatment and discharge in the future. This will be used as the baseline to assess any options put forward by our technical experts.

A technical review group is meeting in conjunction with the community reference group, and is making progress on technical review of the project.

The aim is to have a preferred option by Feb 2019, but no later than April 2019, this will allow council to meet our requirements under the environment court to provide a report to HBRC and the court to implement a solution, the technical rationale, the process and timeline for implementation, considering the consenting process and time, the estimated cost and the process/ timing for necessary funding.

Council are working behind the scenes with community and our technical experts to meet these deadlines and be well placed in 2019 to make progress towards a durable solution.

NZ Herald - Local Focus: The eye-watering cost of Central Hawke's Bay sewage

Update - 30th August 2018

30th August 2018 marked the second meeting of the community reference group setup to assist the exploratory, investigation and design component of this complex upgrade.

The group met at the Waipawa Sports Club on Harker Street in Waipawa, and we received a great attendance level, with two different technical experts delivering information on Wastewater and Discharge 101 to the group.

This built knowledge and context for the group, the experts also spoke about other regions within New Zealand and what is working well for them that could work in Central Hawke's Bay.

The group will meet again in six weeks with a goal to identify key community outcomes for the project, where we can assess any option proposed against these outcomes and work on our goal of working towards a robust, sustainable long term solution that aligns with our community goals of durable infrastructure for generations to come.

Thank you to key members of the community, regional council, CHB Councillors, our technical experts and CHBDC staff for attending and their engaged and valuable input.

wwtp upgrade

wwtp upgrade graphic


Update - 29th August 2018

Following an independent review conducted in late 2017, Central Hawke’s Bay District Council are currently working with a community reference group and specialist advisers to finalise a robust and sustainable option for these two plants going forward.  This may involve upgrading each plant separately or amalgamating the plants.

We aim to have a decision on our preferred option by early 2019, working towards construction commencing in 2020.

waipuk wwtp

Wastewater Strategy - 2020

The Big Wastewater Story, Central Hawke’s Bay’s major infrastructure project to secure the future of the district’s wastewater network, continues to move forward following the Council’s endorsement of the project’s strategy, presented at the Finance and Infrastructure Committee on the 8th October 2020.

A copy of the strategy can be viewed here.

Environment Court Response - 2019

Linked below is the formal response and relevant appendices released to the environment court in September 2019.

Council commissioned reviews into the Waipawa and Waipukurau WWTPs in late 2017 following the court orders, to better understand the ability to improve these plants;

As part of our commitment to improving performance of our plants we are undertaking a raft of improvements at our wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs).

Update -  29 November 2019

A third of the dried sludge has been removed from Waipawa to create an expanded irrigation area at the landfill, the remaining sludge needs to dry out further over the summer before we can commence further removal - this is aimed to be completed by June 2020, ready for the ponds to be de-sludged from July 2020.

Update - 18 September 2019

We are currently working through arranging the clear out of dried sludge area at both plants, the first set of work is expected to start at Waipawa in the coming months. 

The dried sludge has been tested and meets Grade Bb of the biosolids guidelines and we are proposing to reuse as part of the cap of the landfill and to fill a void.

Photo of the dried sludge geobag area at Waipukurau

Geobag Area Waipuk WWTP 2

Photo of the dried sludge geobag area at Waipawa

IMG 20190801 110849

As part of our commitment to improving performance of our plants we are undertaking a raft of improvements at our wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs).

Update - 16 December 2019

A Veolia process engineer is scheduled to spend time in Waipukurau in early 2020 to review and create an improvement plan.

Following this recommendations for improvement will be taken and undertaken.

Update - 01 September 2019

We are awaiting an improvement programme for the Waipukurau WWTP.


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