Archive for the 'Resource Consents' Category

Auckland Council Healthy Waters stormwater network discharge consent

June 19th, 2019

On 16 April 2019 Auckland Council commissioners granted Auckland Council Healthy Waters a network discharge consent for the diversion and discharge consent for all of the existing and future stormwater discharge from the public stormwater network.  Here is the decision.

While we appreciated the public notification and we supported the goal of aligning the range of HW stormwater consents into one framework, STEPS had submitted jointly with Oakley Creek opposing several aspects of this consent. We consider that “all future stormwater discharge” is far too broad given the problematic situation now. Further we see no standards for what can be discharged.

Following our submissions, we were later shocked at the lack of consultation with residents and groups such as STEPS. Special follow up sessions were held by Healthy Waters consent team with various corporate groups who had concerns, but none with other submitters such as Forest and Bird, SASOC (Stop Auckland Sewage Overflows Coalition) or STEPS.   On 31 May STEPS and Friends of Oakley Creek jointly became section 274 participants to the appeals of both Forest and Bird and SASOC, to try to achieve some more balance and involvement of ratepayers in the discharge consent process.  For us this is about clean water, as stormwater is the major driver of pollution in Meola Creek.

Central Interceptor Hearings – Submissions from STEPS, MARA and others

August 25th, 2013

On Friday 2nd August STEPS presented an oral submission to the Hearing (see link below).

We are opposing the use of the Roy Clements Treeway as a site on the basis that it would fragment and diminish one of the few very small natural areas in Mt Albert.

Together with submissions by St Lukes Garden Apartments Body Corporate and MARA (see link below), we asked them to look at possible alternatives which would avoid destruction of so many trees over such a large area.

STEPS submission: STEPS Central Interceptor Hearing 2013 August

MARA submission: MARA Watercare Central Interceptor Summary of Evidence

We were followed by a very thought provoking and informed presentation by Joel Cayford which outlined some of the wider issues.

…  “The overall Central Interceptor project involves further regional consents for the CSO Collector Sewer works … and a network discharge consent…..” … One key question is why the resource consents for this large tunnel project are being considered in advance of the overall network discharge consent.

STEPS notes that according to Watercare’s coloured pictures (though no supporting data) Meola Creek overflows will be significantly reduced but will remain the largest overflow points on the Auckland isthmus after the Central Interceptor is completed. This means we have an ongoing interest and Meola Creek will form part of the sewerage network for probably the next century or more.

Meola Creek & Central Interceptor -> December 2012 STEPS Submission

August 2nd, 2013

Watercare Services applied in 2012 for resource consents for their  sewerage infrastructure project – see

The two largest sewer outfalls in Auckland are on Meola creek, which has  the largest catchment on the Auckland isthmus though it is less than 10km long. So we were keen to assess the impact of this $700 million project on Meola Creek, as it is Watercare’s “only option” for any relief from large volumes of stormwater and sewerage flowing regularly into Waitemata Harbour.  The project was informally labelled “supertunnel”.

The most local impact is that after consulting with Mt Albert Grammar School regarding the site near Lyon Ave, Watercare proposes to largely clear fell an area in the middle of the much loved ‘Roy Clements Treeway’ rather than dig up the edge of the flat sportsfield on the other side of the creek. Clearly such a break in the forest corridor along the creek will be detrimental to the recovering wildlife in the area, let alone the loss of 50 years of growth of totara and other trees, which can never be recovered in our lifetime. All the work done by Roy Clements in the 1980s and by STEPS and the community in replanting this area since 2005 will be lost. STEPS opposes this plan.

We were also shocked to find no assessment of the impacts of the overall sewerage system on the environment.  Unlike the comprehensive 2001 Auckland City Drainage System Resource Consents Assessment of Environmental Effects, this application lacks a view of the creeks which will continue to be affected by overflows AFTER the project is completed.  Instead they provided one small map of 2030 overflows without assumptions, and provided no comparison with current state. We have only a very high level picture of the future predicted flow patterns on Meola Creek.

Further – the project appears to have been applied for as though each site is a small standalone industrial site. Many of these sites are designed to ADD to stormwater runoff (more than minor effects).  The rationale appeared to be that since the “supertunnel” would hold so much runoff, there is no need for Watercre to use Auckland City’s “Best practice”  Low Impact Design approach whereby each Watercare site could be a model example to homebuilders who want to see examples of good design for managing stormwater on site.

Former City Councillor Joel Cayford provides a view on  matters relating to the resource consent application at

The STEPS submission and covering letter can be found here:




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