Paul Bibby’s article ‘Ocean Shores STP (OS STP) inches closer to closure’ (6 October) raises some questions with me as a former sewer operator employed by BSC and a former member of the Water, Waste & Sewer Advisory Committee (WWSAC).
Firstly the WWSAC recommended that OS STP be upgraded at workshops held on 30 September and 1 October 2021. Water & Recycling (W&R) supplied a report compiled by Queensland Consulting firm GHD which supplied reasons why OS STP should be closed and the sewage pumped to Brunswick Valley STP (BVSTP).
The WWSAC has requested to be able to visit OS STP without any success
OS STP was augmented in 1995, terminologies, like ‘old technology’, and that parts cannot be sourced for the existing plant infrastructure are being used as some of the reasons to justify closing OS STP, also old EPA licensing requirements.
I would ask W&R how many interim upgrades have been carried out at OS STP since 1995 by W&R and why have they not upgraded the licensing to modern standards with the EPA for OS STP previously? Surely W&R was aware this was a problem? Interim upgrades of STPs should be fall under the BSC W&R infrastructure maintenance plan.
BSC’s W&R officers had obviously made the decision to close OS STP a long time ago. The fact that no attempt has been made to update the plant or bring it in line with the modern license requirements over the last twenty years would indicate they simply were not interested in the long jeopardy of the OS STP.
One of the simplest improvements would have been to begin irrigating the bushland surrounding OS STP with treated effluent from the plant rather than discharging it into the Brunswick River.