Sustainable reuse of treated effluent from wastewater treatment plants is actively encouraged under the State Policy on Water Quality Management 1997.
The EPA provides advice on the development of sustainable reuse schemes. The EPA, with the assistance of the Wastewater Reuse Coordinating Group, also co-ordinates assessment of proposed recycled water schemes sourced from EPA regulated wastewater treatment plants. Regulation of recycled water schemes is the responsibility of Local Government.
The Environmental Guidelines for the Use of Recycled Water in Tasmania, December 2002 ("Tasmanian Recycled Water Guidelines") provide an overview of the environmental issues which must be addressed when considering an effluent reuse scheme and the associated ongoing management requirements. These guidelines also provide information on what must be submitted in a Development Proposal and Environmental Management Plan to enable an assessment of the proposed recycled water scheme.
While an application for effluent reuse of Class B recycled water for irrigation may be satisfactorily assessed under the Tasmanian Guidelines, where a proposal requires the use of Class A effluent (e.g. for irrigation of raw edible crops or for urban/residential recycling) an application submitted in accordance with the more rigorous requirements of the National Guidelines for Water Recycling: Managing Health and Environmental Risks, 2006 may be required.
The Effluent Reuse Feasibility Study Guidelines, August 2011 offer guidance to wastewater managers on what information must be provided to the EPA in order satisfy the Reuse Feasibility requirements set down in a Permit or Environment Protection Notice (EPN).
Regular reviews of the Wastewater Reuse
Environmental Management Plan are generally a requirement in relation to
EPA regulated wastewater treatment plants discharging to an associated
wastewater reuse scheme. The ongoing sustainability of the effluent reuse
scheme is demonstrated through a review of scheme operation undertaken in
accordance with the Wastewater Reuse EMP Review Guidelines.