MEDIA RELEASE: Greytown wastewater to land scheme goes live

19 June 2019

UPDATED 21 June with link to video –

Switching on Greytown’s wastewater to land irrigation scheme is a major milestone in South Wairarapa District Council’s journey to diverting wastewater from our waterways.

The scheme was formally switched on today by South Wairarapa Mayor Viv Napier with councillors, community board members, and the community and contractors involved in the project gathering at Papawai Marae for a pōwhiri and then a tour of the plant.

“Discharging wastewater to waterways is not environmentally, or culturally, acceptable. South Wairarapa District Council has a goal to discharge one hundred percent of its wastewater to land, putting an end to discharging to water, except in exceptional circumstances,” said Mayor Viv Napier.

“We are delighted at what has been achieved here at Greytown; it’s testament to the hard work and collaboration of so many people who all share the same goal.”

The pōwhiri was followed by a switching-on ceremony at the wastewater treatment plant and a tour of the wastewater treatment plant, led by Infrastructure and Services Group Manager Mark Allingham.

“Wastewater is treated in oxidation ponds then UV-disinfected before being irrigated to a 25-hectare block of Council-owned land next to the wastewater treatment plant,” said Mr Allingham

“In the summer months, the land is expected to absorb all of the town’s wastewater; 25 percent of it annually.”

Over the next thirty years, Council has plans to upscale its operations and irrigate to further blocks of Council-owned land near the current site. The staged approach is aimed at keeping wastewater upgrades affordable for ratepayers.

“Close monitoring of the site and adjustments to the system will increase efficiencies and the effectiveness of the operation, and help inform the scheme’s future expansion,” said Mr Allingham.

A similar scheme has been operating in Martinborough since December 2017, and is proposed for Featherston. More information about the Council’s wastewater to land project –


Media Contact

Amy Wharram

Communications Manager

027 252 2863

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