Pollution and sewage regulations

Find out about the environmental impact of sewage, and which zones allow vessels to discharge sewage.

  Sewage pollution

As the number of large recreational boats and commercial vessels in Western Australian waters increases, it is becoming more and more important to control the discharge of sewage into the marine environment.

Marine pollution due to sewage and sullage is regulated at the international, national and state levels.

How does it enter the marine environment?

Treated and untreated sewage can be discharged from vessels under normal operating conditions. Accidental discharges could also come from vessels and land-based sources.

Sewage treatment plants may also make controlled discharges into the water.

What impact does it have?

Sewage can have varying effects on the marine environment, depending on habitat types and locations. Some may be able to absorb more sewage, but others could be significantly impacted.

Large quantities of nutrient-rich sewage may encourage algal blooms, which deplete the oxygen supply, killing larger marine life.

Sewage could also introduce bacteria that cause disease for humans who come into contact with it, or who eat seafood from an affected area.

What you can do

You can reduce the amount of sewage being released into the water by:

  • Using shore facilities when in harbour, rather than your vessel's toilet.
  • Installing an approved sewage treatment system in your boat if possible (please contact the Department of Health for more information).
Opens in a new window Department of Health

  Sewage regulations

Department of Transport sewage strategy

The Department of Transport's sewage strategy provides guidelines for sewage discharge in Western Australian waters. It established 3 zones based on the degree of risk to public health and the environment:

  • Zone 1 - No discharge.
  • Zone 2 - No discharge except for vessels with approved treatment systems.
  • Zone 3 - Open zone.

Please download our sewage strategy below.

MAC-IS-SewageStrategy.pdf icon Sewage strategy Kb

Other regulations

Other State Government agencies that regulate sewage pollution include

  • Department of Environment Regulation.
  • Department of Fisheries.
  • Department of Health.
Opens in a new window Department of Environment Regulation (DER)
Opens in a new window Department of Fisheries
Opens in a new window Department of Health

  Sewage discharge zones

Chidley
Chidley

The following information is provided to assist Western Australian boat owners in the responsible disposal of sewage from their vessel.

Zone 1: No discharge

There is strictly no discharge of any sewage from a vessel in the following areas:

  • Marinas, yacht clubs, boat harbours and ports.
  • Most inland waterways, including the Swan and Canning rivers.
  • The Rottnest Island reserve.
  • Marine nature reserves and sanctuary zones within marine parks.
  • Designated areas of marine parks, marine management areas or fish habitat protection areas.
  • Within 500 metres of any aquaculture operation.
  • Within 100 metres of any recognised swimming area.

Zone 2: No discharge except for vessels with approved treatment systems

Vessels with a WA Department of Health approved sewage treatment system may discharge sewage in this zone, as long as the equipment is functionally properly.

This discharge is limited to waters not included in Zone 1 and designated parts of estuaries, marine parks and fish habitat protection areas.

Treated sewage must not be discharged less than 20 metres from a stationary vessel or person in the water.

Zone 3: Open

All other waters not designated under Zones 1 or 2 are considered open for untreated sewage discharge.

Sewage must not be discharged within 500 metres of land or 100 metres of a stationary vessel or person in the water.

Sewage discharge sites

Location Address details Fee type
Albany Amity Quays, Princess Royal Drive Free
Albany Emu Beach Holiday Park, 8 Medcalf Parade Free for registered guests or fee for dump point use only
Albany Middleton Beach Holiday Park Free for registered guests or fee for dump point use only
Augusta Turner Caravan Park, 1 Blackwood Avenue Free for registered guests or fee for dump point use only
Barradale Barradale Rest Area, Yannarie River Free
Binnu Murchison River Crossing  
Broome Cable Beach Caravan Park, 8 Millington Road Free for registered guests or fee for dump point use only
Broome Palm Grove Caravan Park, corner Cable Beach Rd and Murray Road For registered guests only
Broome Roebuck Bay Caravan Park, 91 Walcott Street Free for registered guests or fee for dump point use only
Bunbury Bunbury Village Holiday Park, corner Bussell Highway and Washington Avenue Free for registered guests or fee for dump point use only
Bunbury Koombana Bay Holiday Resort, Koombana Drive Free for registered guests or fee for dump point use only
Busselton Amblin Caravan Park, 583-585 Bussell Highway For registered guests only
Busselton Kookaburra Caravan Park, 66 Marine Terrace Free for registered guests or fee for dump point use only
Busselton Peppermint Park Eco Village, 97 Caves Road Free for registered guests or fee for dump point use only
Carnarvon Carnarvon Public Dump Point, Robinson Street Free
Cervantes Cervantes Waste Transfer Station and Recycling Centre, 5 Estella Way, Cervantes Free for registered guests or fee for dump point use only
Coral Bay Peoples Park Caravan Village, Lot 11 Robinson Street Free for registered guests or fee for dump point use only
Dampier Dampier Transit Caravan Park Free for registered guests or fee for dump point use only
Dawesville Dawesville Holiday Village, 1149 Old Coast Road For registered guests only
Denham Denham Seaside Tourist Resort Free for registered guests or fee for dump point use only
Denmark Peaceful Bay Ring Road, Peaceful Bay  
Derby Kimberley Entrance Caravan Park Free for registered guests or fee for dump point use only
Derby West Kimberley Lodge and Caravan Park Free for registered guests or fee for dump point use only
Dongara Dongara Denison Beach Holiday Park, 250 Ocean Drive Free for registered guests or fee for dump point use only
Dongara Dongara Dump Point, 9518 Waldeck Street Free
Esperance Esperance Bay Holiday Park, 162 Dempster Street Free for registered guests or fee for dump point use only
Exmouth Murat Road, Exmouth  
Exmouth Ningaloo Caravan and Holiday Resort Free for registered guests or fee for dump point use only
Fremantle Fremantle Village Caravan Park For registered guests only
Geraldton Batavia Coast Caravan Park, 239 Hall Road Free for registered guests or fee for dump point use only
Geraldton Greenough Rivermouth Caravan Park Free for registered guests or fee for dump point use only
Geraldton Sunset Beach Holiday Park Free for registered guests or fee for dump point use only
Guilderton Guilderton Caravan Park, 2 Dewar Street Free for registered guests or fee for dump point use only
Hopetoun 1 Senna Road Free
Jurien Bay Jurien Bay Caravan Park, 1 Roberts Street Free for registered guests or fee for dump point use only
Kalbarri Kalbarri Town Dump, Porter Street Free
Kalbarri Kalbarri Tudor Caravan Park, 10 Porter Street Free for registered guests or fee for dump point use only
Kalbarri Murchison Caravan Park, 92 Grey Street Free for registered guests or fee for dump point use only
Kununurra Kununurra Town Caravan Park, 40 Bloodwood Drive Free for registered guests or fee for dump point use only
Kununurra Ord River Road House, 5 Messmate Way Free (with fuel fill up)
Mandurah Peel Caravan Park, 598 Pinjarra Road For registered guests only
Margaret River 79 Walcliffe Road, Margaret River For registered guests only
Myalup Myalup Beach Caravan Park, Myalup Beach Road For registered guests only
Northampton Northampton Public Dump Point, behind Memorial Gardens Free
Onslow Onslow Public Dump Point, Cameron Avenue Free
Point Samson The Cove Caravan Park, 259 MacLeod Street Free for registered guests or fee for dump point use only
Port Hedland Cooke Point Holiday Park, Taylor Street For registered guests only
Port Hedland Eighty Mile Caravan Park For registered guests only
Port Hedland Port Hedland Caravan Park, 945 Great Northern Highway Free for registered guests or fee for dump point use only
Walpole Coalmine Beach Holiday Park, Coalmine Beach Road Free for registered guests or fee for dump point use only
Woodman Point Woodman Point Holiday Park Free for registered guests or fee for dump point use only

  Special rules for popular boating locations

Rottnest Island

Release of untreated sewage is prohibited in the bays and designated sanctuary zones (see Zone 1 above). Waste from a Department of Health approved treatment units may be discharged into other parts of the marine reserve (see Zone 2 above).

For more information, please go to the Rottnest Island Authority.

Swan and Canning rivers

Sewage discharge is totally prohibited (see Zone 1 above).

For more information on the Swan and Canning Riverpark, please go to the Swan River trust.

Murray and Serpentine rivers

Sewage discharge is totally prohibited (see Zone 1 above).

Peel and Harvey Inlet

Sewage discharge is totally prohibited (see Zone 1 above).

Opens in a new window Rottnest Island Authority
Opens in a new window Swan River Trust

Image of boat water wake at sea

 

Page last updated: Thu Jan 10 2019 9:07:45 AM