Water in the Chichester Trunk Gravity Main (CTGM) in the Hunter region is classified as raw, untreated water, meaning it is unsafe to drink under Australian guidelines. Hunter water is now looking to provide alternate solutions for affected residents.
Since November 2016, Hunter Water has been regularly engaging with 71 properties which are directly connected to the CTGM, north of the Dungog Water Treatment Plant. These customers have always had a non-standard connection for raw untreated water and have been paying a discounted rate since July 2000, reflecting that it is untreated.
Hunter Water has offered to provide a rainwater tank or an onsite treatment option for these residents to ensure they have a safe drinking water supply. On average, Hunter Water estimates the value it is providing is $30,000 per property.
To date, 19 properties who have accepted this offer now have a solution in place. Hunter Water continues to work with customers who have not yet agreed to receiving a drinking water solution.
Rainwater tanks and onsite treatment solutions are common for rural and remote properties that cannot feasibly be connected to the reticulated network, including in Hunter Water’s area of operations. Drinking water and wastewater are the responsibility of the property owner in these cases.
Hunter Water intends to supply raw untreated water for irrigation and other non-potable purposes, provided that customers give a written acknowledgement that they will not use the water for drinking purposes.