Discharges to Land
Wastes are unwanted solids and liquids that are to be discarded or discharged. The amount of waste disposed of in Marlborough has steadily increased, mostly due to an increasing population, economic growth and increasing consumer demand.
A strong rural economy and a prevalence of residential living in rural and coastal environments mean that a wide variety of liquid wastes are created in Marlborough. These include but are not limited to:
Dairy Effluent Discharge
Marlborough has a relatively small dairy industry in comparison to other areas. However, discharge of dairy effluent can still have a negative impact on soil and water quality if environmental issues are not appropriately managed.
Marlborough District Council carries out annual monitoring on all dairy farms around Marlborough. As at 2020/2021, 46 dairy farms operate in Marlborough.
Land application of Dairy Effluent has proven difficult when it has occurred on soils with a high degree of preferential flow, soils with artificial drainage, soils with either an infiltration or drainage limitation, or when applied to soils on rolling/sloping country. The effect of these conditions can be exacerbated by climate where high rainfall can further contribute to the poor environmental performance of such land application systems.
Domestic wastewater discharge
In the Marlborough area, domestic wastewater is discharged into soils of low permeability, into thin soils with limited ability to treat contaminants or into extremely permeable alluvial soils. In all cases, there is the potential for contaminants to travel beyond the land application area and into the surrounding environment, through runoff or infiltration.