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Whangarei Wastewater Treatment plant’s digestive system

Whangarei District Council media release
August 9 2018

The Whangarei Wastewater Treatment plant’s digestive system has once again been upset by a mystery dose of heavy chemicals.

Council Waste and Drainage Manager Andrew Carvell says people passing by the Kioreroa Rd Treatment Plant may notice unpleasant smells for the next few weeks following some as yet unidentified chemicals entering the system this morning.

The last time this happened was during the Christmas period and the smells settled down after a few weeks.

“The plant is basically a giant digestion system that uses living bacteria to break-down the toxins that enter it. Much like the digestive system each of us has in our gut, it relies on bacteria to break down nutrients and produce waste that can be managed. In this case something poisonous has got into the system and wiped out the good bacteria. The results may be pretty unpleasant for everyone.”

Mr Carvell says Council is still investigating the source of today's chemical intrusion to the system.

“The situation is a reminder that what goes into the sewer system ultimately winds up in wastewater treatment plants and people need to be mindful of this.”

© Scoop Media

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