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Water saving plan launched

19 February 2008

Water saving plan launched

Kapiti Coast District Council’s innovative requirement for all new houses to have either a 10,000 litre water tank or a 4,500 litre tank and greywater system for garden irrigation was introduced to more than 150 local builders, plumbers, designers and developers late last week.

The approach should mean that by 2050 more than 40% of Kapiti Coast District homes will have tanks or tanks and greywater systems with potential water savings of more than 30% of today’s town water consumption, the Council’s Water Use Coordinator, Ben Thompson said.

The change means no taps for outdoor use can be connected to the town supply and rainwater will be used to supply toilets, the laundry and outdoors. When water levels in the tank fall below 1000 litres, there is provision for a limited supply of 600 litres of town water per day to top up rainwater tanks. Greywater from the laundry and bathroom is used for subsurface irrigation.

Kapiti Coast District Mayor Jenny Rowan emphasised what the change will mean for the people of the district.

“It means a shift in thinking. It means that in not too many years there will be many people who have these systems who are contributing to saving water on the coast. The Council will be very involved in what happens with water management in the near future and into the longer term.

“We have already talked about ways we can take this plan change further into retrofitting existing homes and about how the old tanks under homes in Raumati and Paraparaumu can be reactivated.

“Water is a finite resource. This plan change puts us at the cutting edge of water demand management in New Zealand and ahead of many other parts of the world,” Jenny Rowan said.

All new homes will be required to fit either a 10,000 litre rainwater tank for laundry use and toilet flushing, or a 4,500 litre rain water tank with a greywater option for garden irrigation. In both cases town supply will top up when a critical level is reached.

The launch, which took place at a briefing breakfast held at Southward’s Theatre, also included an exhibition of the latest in water efficient technologies that will support the plan change.

Information on the technical impacts of the change and what it means for building consents and inspections is available from the Kapiti Coast District Council.


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