Vaucluse & Diamond Bay: a long term solution

We’re committed to investigating options to deliver a permanent solution to manage the last remaining untreated wastewater discharges in NSW.

A legacy from Sydney's early wastewater network, there are currently three outfalls operating at Vaucluse and Diamond Bay in Sydney's East.

While there's no easy fix, we'll soon restart consulting with the community, the Environment Protection Authority and leading experts in the field to identify the best solution to managing these outfalls.

Ocean cliff and water below

Planning work for the project is progressing.

About the Vaucluse and Diamond Bay long term solution

We've finalised a pollution study to assess the level of risk to the environment and public health from three cliff-face outfalls in Vaucluse and Diamond Bay.

The report, Vaucluse Diamond Bay Ocean Discharges, was prepared in response to NSW Environment Protection Authority's Pollution Reduction Program.

While these are the last remaining untreated discharges in NSW, water quality at nearby swimming beaches, including Bondi, remain 'good' or 'very good' based on regular Beachwatch monitoring.

However, we recommend that people avoid fishing, swimming or coming into contact with water near the three outfalls while we work towards a solution.

Community consultation is expected to start in April 2018.

Built between 1916 and 1936, the three outfalls at Vaucluse and Diamond Bay currently discharge untreated wastewater into the ocean.

Our preferred solution is to transfer the untreated wastewater to our treatment plant in Bondi.

During previous community consultation, a number of long term solutions were considered. These broadly consisted of transferring:

  • dry weather flows to Bondi Wastewater Treatment Plant
  • dry and wet weather flows to Bondi Wastewater Treatment Plant.

We've inspected, cleaned and repaired 12 kilometres of high flow public wastewater pipes in the Vaucluse and Diamond Bay areas. This work has successfully reduced the volume of wastewater going to the ocean in the short term.

We'll now review past options and look at new options available through advancements in technology.

We're committed to continuing to work closely with the local community and stakeholders to ensure we deliver the best solution to manage these outfalls. 
To learn more, contact our Community Relations Team by:

Sydney Water
Community Relations
PO Box 399