Spilling sewers

In many of Auckland’s older suburbs, stormwater and sewerage is combined. As the population has increased, infrastructure has failed to adapt adequately, and changes in climate make rainfall events more intense.

Produced by New Zealand Geographic

Under the terms of its resource consent, Watercare is allowed to overflow sewerage into the harbour twice per year per engineered overflow point. At some 50 locations in the western isthmus, such as here in Herne Bay, the overflow is tripped almost every time it rains, spilling around 2.2 million cubic metres of diluted wastewater into the harbour each year.

What happens on land flows to sea. In the urban context, this comprises sewerage overflows and stormwater run-off which contains industrial chemicals, contaminants and heavy metals. We need to clean up our act.

Episodes From This Location

City of sails

1 minute / 2018

Waka-ama with Richard

1 minute / 2018

Prepare for take-off

1 minute / 2018

Islands of the Gulf

1 minute / 2018

Future food

1 minute / 2018

Dumped

1 minute / 2018

The remains of the day

1 minute / 2018

Spilling sewers

1 minute / 2018

Recreational fishing

1 minute / 2018

Meet the locals

1 minute / 2018

Off balance

1 minute / 2018

Sustainable fishing

1 minute / 2018

Bow riding

1 minute / 2018

Trevally traffic

1 minute / 2018

Beneath the boats

1 minute / 2018

City on the sea

1 minute / 2018