Recycled water

1. Overview

Recycled Water refers to highly treated effluent from sewage treatment plants.

At the Byron Bay sewage treatment plant, up to one mega-litre a day of effluent that would otherwise be discharged into our water ways, or one Olympic sized swimming pool, is treated.

In Byron Bay recycled water is used for:

  • toilet flushing at public toilet blocks in the Byron Bay town centre and some sporting clubs

  • irrigation of sporting fields, parks and gardens

  • irrigation of nurseries

  • truck filling standpipes for construction applications and dust suppression.

Purple pipes mean recycled water.

The purple pipes recently installed in the Byron Bay township provide recycled water to flush all public toilets around the Byron Bay town center and to irrigate parks and gardens all year round.

Is recycled water safe?

Any contact with recycled water should not be a concern as it is treated to a very high standard. Despite the high quality, recycled water is not suitable for drinking, cooking or bathing, including use in swimming pools.

Contact Byron Shire Council Systems Environment Officer on 02 6685 9322 if you are interested in using recycled water.

2. Benefits of recycled water

There are many benefits of recycling waste water.

Recycling water:

  • creates a renewable resource
  • conserves our drinking water
  • provides a reliable source of water all year round
  • reduces treated effluent discharge
  • protects local waterways
  • is at a very low user cost.


3. The recycling process

At the Byron Bay sewage treatment plant effluent passes through multiple levels of treatment designed to remove all potential pollutants and harmful microorganism, the recycling process includes: 

  • Biological processes to remove pollutants, organic matter, grease and oil, nutrients and harmful microorganisms.
  • Disinfection through UV sterilisation.
  • Sand filtration.
  • Disinfection with chlorine.