Etham Eader Update 19
Friday 19 December
From February to June 2014 the Council pumped away over 6 million litres of liquid waste from the Eader. We stopped pumping in July when we encountered sludge which was too thick to be pumped. Over the past month we have added specially cultured enzymes to break down the remaining sludge to a liquid. This process has worked really well and we are currently pumping the last of the sludge away to Hawera. However in removing the last of the sludge we do need to pump, which has the effect of stirring up the remaining contents.
We expect this pumping to continue until the end ofJanuary. However over the Christmas-New Year period we are stopping all pumping operations (from today) and will not resume until 5 January.
Once we have removed as much sludge as possible we will then fully decommission, fill and cover the Eader. It will be replaced with a grassed area - by which point we expect no further odours from the Eader. This is currently planned for February to March 2015. I will contact you well before the start of work to let you know exactly what we are doing and when we will be doing it.
Once again I do sincerely apologise for any inconveniences –please don’t hesitate to contact me if you have any questions.
Etham Eader Update 18
Friday 14 November 2014
I’d like to update you on some work that will be happening at the Eltham Waste Water Treatment plant next week in preparation for decommissioning the Eader.
On Monday, contractors (Parklink) will start dosing the solidified remains in the Eader with a specially cultured bacteria so that it can be broken down into a more liquid form.
Parklink have designed and built a new bio reactor and setup on site specifically for this purpose.
Once the solid remains in the Eader have been reduced to a form that allows it to be pumped, it will be transferred to Hawera for further treatment.
When this process has been completed and as much has been pumped out as possible the Eader will be filled in and decommissioned. The contractors are organised to begin the decommissioning work in the New Year.
If you have further questions on these works please direct them to me.
Etham Eader Update 17
Wednesday 4 June 2014
We have now transferred 7.3 millionlitres from the Eader which includes not only all the milk waste we accepted from Fonterra but a large portion of the material that had been in the Eader for some years. There is only a comparatively small amount left and due to the very thick sludge-like consistency of the remaining waste, only 30,000 litres is being transferred each day now.
Odour complaints have also stopped. We received just one complaint in the last 18 days and this coincides with the fact we are now pumping very low volumes of the remaining sludge.
The on-site gas monitoring continues and levels of hydrogen sulphide remain barely detectable. The monitoring equipment will be removed in the near future.
We are now looking at decommissioning the Eader. One option is to fill it in and we are currently investigating the cost to do this. We will continue to keep members of the Eltham Community Liaison Group informed regarding progress with the permanent decommissioning of the Eader.
This will be the last Update to all residents in the wider area. Once again thank you for your patience and understanding during this time.
Open Letter regarding future use of the Eader at the Eltham Wastewater Plant.
As you are all well aware, in September last year an Engineering Officer of the South Taranaki District Council agreed to accept a quantity of buttermilk from Fonterra to assist the company deal with its excess production - otherwise known as the “spring flush”. The time to properly consider this proposal was, by virtue of the nature of daily milk production, limited and while the officers response was well intentioned, the approval never should have been given.
The Eader was mothballed in the late 1990s because, other than on a few occasions following commissioning, it failed to successfully do what it was originally designed for. The decision last year to accept the buttermilk has had considerable flow on effects and the most regrettable of these has been the negative impact on the quality of life, health and general well-being of those residents who live in the vicinity of the Eltham wastewater plant.
I have publicly apologised on a number of occasions for the impact this decision has had on residents and I take the opportunity to do so again now.
The main purpose of this letter however, is to offer my absolute guarantee that as long as I remain the Chief Executive, this Council will not accept any further buttermilk, or any other waste product, at the Eltham Eader facility.
We are currently working towards emptying the Eader as quickly as we are able and believe it should then be decommissioned. With that in mind, my intention is to recommend to Council that a suitable financial provision is made in the 2015-2025 Long Term Plan to enable that to be carried out.
Again, I offer my sincere apologies for the distress this incident has caused.
Updates delivered to affected residents
Notes from meetings with Community Liaison Group
Inspection Reports from Taranaki Regional Council:
Click on the date to read the report
Please click here to download a copy of the compensation form