Napier City Council’s Stormwater Bylaw 2020 comes into effect on 1 February 2020.
After public consultation during late 2019, the Council adopted the draft bylaw in December. Public and councillor feedback, and recommendations from consultants who helped with the process was considered and incorporated into the final bylaw document.
The 2020 Stormwater Bylaw aims to better protect the city’s urban waterways, stormwater reticulation, Te Whanganui-a-Orotū (Ahuriri estuary) and the general coastal environment.
The bylaw is one of the tools that Council staff can use to encourage better practices when it comes to the discharge of contaminants which enter the environment via the Council managed stormwater pipes and urban open waterway network. Council has a legal obligation to comply with its stormwater discharge permit, issued by Hawke’s Bay Regional Council (HBRC). The revised bylaw enables better protection of the environment and goes above and beyond what is legally required.
The 2020 Stormwater Bylaw replaces the first bylaw adopted by NCC in 2012.
“The intent of the bylaw is that we all do our bit to protect the environment whilst balancing the needs of activities within the city. We want to create positive change – part of this will come from public education - and encourage personal responsibility,” says Keith Price, Chair of the Sustainable Napier committee, which provides governance to city infrastructure.
A key focus is stopping contamination at its source, as it is much harder to remove pollution once it has entered water. Council is currently investigating where different types of contaminants are appearing at key points within the city’s waterways. This will inform future projects such as a “treatment train” to counter these contaminants and enable tracking back to the source.
There are 31 other New Zealand councils that currently regulate which types of contaminants can be discharged into stormwater. This updated bylaw will bring NCC into line with other councils, says Councillor Price. “Along with public education, the proposed changes will help us strive towards better environmental outcomes for Napier.”
2 March 2020
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