Author Brad Farmer calls for objections to Catherine Hill Bay ‘effluent water’ discharge proposal

UP IN ARMS: Beach author Brad Farmer says a plan to send water from a Catherine Hill Bay housing estate to a nearby lagoon is “unacceptable”. Picture: Sylvia Liber. Tourism “beach ambassador” Brad Farmer has called onCatherine Hill Bay visitors to place last-minute objections againsta plan to pump treated waste water into a beach lagoon.

Mr Farmer, who has written about ’s beaches for the past three decades and included Catherine Hill Bay in his 2012 book101 Best n Beaches, also called for an extension to the submission period which ends on Wednesday at 5pm.

Solo Water, the company behind the proposal to send the water from a Catherine Hill Bay housing estate to the lagoon,told the Newcastle Heraldlast month the product is“recycled water”that could be usedfor laundry, watering produce and flushing toilets.

READ MORE:Catherine Hill Bay Progress Association and Solo Water clash over recycled waste water plan

“This is completely unacceptable,” Mr Farmer said.

“To me, it’s vandalism. There are many other alternatives.

“It’s unnatural water going to a natural waterway.”

Beyond health factors, Mr Farmer believesthe discharge could ultimately influence Catherine Hill Bay’s potential as a tourist site.

“It is the most historic, in-tact, pristine coal-mining village in ,” he said.

READ MORE:Writer Brad Farmer reviews Hunter landmarks for inclusion in 101 Best n Beaches

“For a developer across the hillto discharge their effluent into the poor man’s creek, is not only improper, but against every environmental moral.

“Catherine Hill Bay is a tourism draw card.”

Lake Macquarie City Council willlodge aresponse to the plan, butthe city’s position has notbeen made public.

The Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal first asked forsubmissions from interested parties on March 28.

Submissions can be made on the IPART website.