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2020 Discharge Rules

All Septic Tanks and Sewage Systems must meet Government discharge rules by 2020

To help improve the environment, the government wants to stop all septic tanks and failing sewage treatment plants from discharging sewage into the watercourse, such as a rivers, streams, ditches and onto land.

This means owners of these tanks and plants will need to replace or upgrade them by 1st January 2020.

I am selling my property – am I effected?

Yes:  if you own a septic tank or sewage treatment plant that discharges sewage into the watercourse or onto open ground, then you will need to replace or upgrade it to meet Environmental Standards.  This needs to be done before exchanging, even if this is before 1st January 2020.

typical Septic Tank
Typical Septic Tank
House for sale sign

Environment law – overview

All sewage discharges need to meet environment laws. This is either by obtaining and Environmental Permit, or if it’s a small household discharge then you maybe able to operate under General Binding Rules for small sewage discharges.

Here are a few examples from the General Binding rules:

  1. Are you discharging less than 2000 litres a day into a soak-away?
  2. Are you discharging 5000 litres a day into the water coarse?
  3. Does the discharge flow into any environmentally protected zones, such as a Special Site of Scientific Interest, or Ramsar Site?
  4. Is the discharge near or on in source Protection Zone?

If your system can meet the General Binding Rules, you shouldn’t need an environmental permit. However, you are still required to have a system meets what ever discharge permission you have (either the Binding Rules or Environmental Permit).

The General Binding Rules are vast and complex, and we recommend you seek expect advise before making any changes or looking to install a sewage treatment system.

Area of outstanding beauty
Protected Area
A small stream running through woodland

Free Health Check!

If you are worried about your system, think you’re effected by these changes, or want to improve your current system then Moody Sewage can help.  

We provide a Free Health Check to owners of septic tanks and treatment plants. This includes our Consultants visiting your property, checking your system’s condition, looking to see if it meets environmental standards and to provide advice. 

We can also provide advice and guidance for any change or work that you wish to undertake. 

Contact Us - To find out how we can help