Changes to Environment Protection Act

Tuesday, 10 May 2022

From 1 July 2021 there are changes to the Environment Protection Act relating to the installation, maintenance, approval and use of onsite wastewater management systems. 

The changes to the Act will have limited impact on current owners of onsite wastewater management systems (OWMS) and those who are looking to install a new system. 

The installation of Sandfilter systems will be most impacted.

What this means...

Changes to the Act mean that many installers of sandfilters were unaware of the transition to AS 1546.3:2017: On-site domestic wastewater treatment units, Part 3: Secondary treatment systems; and were unable to obtain a certificate of conformity as required by the Regulations in time for commencement of the Act.  

As a result of this the Environment Protection Authority (EPA) have developed a process to support exemptions from the certificate of conformity requirement for sand filters while they reassess the legislation.

As well as complying with Appendix G: Sand filters of the Code of Practice onsite wastewater management, the EPA also require that all future sandfilters are lined with an impermeable layer.

If you are affected by this change...

On receipt of your applications, we will forward the application and the exemption forms to the EPA for assessment.

The EPA may take up to 15 business days to make a decision, so please factor in this additional time when you apply for a permit to install a sandfilter.

Any questions about the exemption process should be emailed to the EPA ([email protected]).

What happens next...

Further details of these impacts will be shared as more information becomes available.

However, there is additional information on the Environment Protection Authority website.

Page last updated: Tuesday, 10 May 2022