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Ship-sourced sewage management definitions

Hervey Bay waters

Hervey Bay waters means the waters of Hervey Bay, other than prohibited discharge waters, within a boundary drawn:

  • from Burrum Point on the mainland to the Fairway Beacon, Hervey Bay
  • to Rooney Point, Fraser Island
  • along the western shore of Fraser Island to latitude 25º22.90' south
  • to latitude 25º24.90' south, longitude 152º58.06' east
  • due west to the mainland at latitude 25º24.90' south.

(See Transport Operations (Marine Pollution) Regulation 2008, schedule 9 – Dictionary, section 3.)

Northern Moreton Bay waters

Northern Moreton Bay waters means the waters of Moreton Bay, other than prohibited discharge waters, within a boundary drawn:

  • from latitude 27°06' south on the mainland to South Point, Bribie Island
  • along the southern shore of Bribie Island to Skirmish Point
  • to Comboyuro Point, Moreton Island
  • along the western shore of Moreton Island to Reeders Point
  • to Amity Point, North Stradbroke Island
  • to Cleveland Point on the mainland.

(See Transport Operations (Marine Pollution) Regulation 2008, schedule 9 – Dictionary, section 3.)

Open waters

Open waters means coastal waters, other than Hervey Bay waters, northern Moreton Bay waters, prohibited discharge waters and smooth waters.

(See Transport Operations (Marine Pollution) Regulation 2008, schedule 9 – Dictionary, section 3.)

Nil discharge waters

There are three major classifications for nil discharge waters as follows:

  1. Nil discharge waters for untreated sewage for all ships (other than a declared ship).
  2. Nil discharge waters for treated sewage for all ships (other than a declared ship).
  3. Nil discharge waters for treated and untreated sewage from a declared ship.

(See Transport Operations (Marine Pollution) Regulation 2008, (a) schedule 4 — Nil discharge waters for untreated sewage, (b) schedule 5 — Nil discharge waters for treated sewage, and (c) schedule 6 — Nil discharge waters for treated sewage or untreated sewage from a declared ship.)

Nil discharge waters for untreated sewage for all ships (other than a declared ship)

The nil discharge waters for untreated sewage (that is, the waters where the discharge of untreated sewage is not permitted) from a ship (other than a declared ship) are as follows:

  1. Prohibited discharge waters
  2. Smooth waters
  3. If a ship has 16 or more persons onboard – Hervey Bay waters, northern Moreton Bay waters and open waters.
  4. Hervey Bay waters and northern Moreton Bay waters within 1852 metres (or one nautical mile) of any of the following:
    1. aquaculture fisheries resources
    2. a reef
    3. the mean low water mark of the mainland.
  5. Open waters:
    1. Within 926 metres (or ½ nautical mile) of a wharf or a jetty other than a jetty that is a marina.
    2. Within 1852 metres (or one nautical mile) of aquaculture fisheries resources.
    3. If a ship has seven to 15 persons onboard – within 1852 metres (or one nautical mile) of any of the following: 
      1. a reef
      2. the mean low water mark of an island or the mainland.

Note: any ship that has 16 or more persons onboard is prohibited from discharging untreated sewage within all Queensland coastal waters.

(See Transport Operations (Marine Pollution) Regulation 2008, schedule 4 — Nil discharge waters for untreated sewage, section 44)

Nil discharge waters for treated sewage for all ships (other than a declared ship)

The nil discharge waters for treated sewage (that is the waters where the discharge of treated sewage is not permitted) from a ship (other than a declared ship) are as follows:

  1. Prohibited discharge waters
  2. For grade C treated sewage – Hervey Bay waters, northern Moreton Bay waters, open waters and smooth waters within 926 metres (or ½ nautical mile) of any of the following:
    1. a person in the water
    2. aquaculture fisheries resources
    3. a reef.
  3. For grade B treated sewage – Hervey Bay waters, northern Moreton Bay waters, open waters and smooth waters within 700 metres of any of the following:
    1. a person in the water
    2. aquaculture fisheries resources
    3. a reef.
  4. For grade A treated sewage – there are no additional precautionary discharge distances from sensitive areas. As such, grade A treated sewage may be lawfully discharged in all waters outside prohibited discharge waters.

(See Transport Operations (Marine Pollution) Regulation 2008, schedule 5 – Nil discharge waters for treated sewage, section 45.)

Nil discharge waters treated and untreated sewage from a declared ship

Untreated sewage
The nil discharge waters for untreated sewage (that is the waters where the discharge of untreated sewage is not permitted) from a declared ship are as follows:

  1. Prohibited discharge waters
  2. Hervey Bay waters, northern Moreton Bay smooth waters
  3. Open waters:
    1. Within 926 metres (or ½ nautical mile) of a wharf or jetty other than a jetty that is a marina.
    2. Within 1852 metres (or one nautical mile) of any of the following:
      1. aquaculture fisheries resources
      2. if a declared ship has seven to 15 persons onboard – a reef or the mean low water mark of an island or the mainland.
    3. If a declared ship has 16 or more persons onboard – all open waters.

Note: any ship (including a declared ship) that has 16 or more persons onboard is prohibited from discharging untreated sewage within all Queensland coastal waters.

(See Transport Operations (Marine Pollution) Regulation 2008, schedule 6 — Nil discharge waters for treated sewage or untreated sewage from a declared ship, section 47.)

Treated sewage
The nil discharge waters for treated sewage (that is the waters where the discharge of treated sewage is not permitted) from a declared ship are as follows:

  1. Prohibited discharge waters
  2. For grade C treated sewage – Hervey Bay waters, northern Moreton Bay waters, open waters and smooth waters within 926 metres (or ½ nautical mile) of any of the following:
    1. a person in the water
    2. aquaculture fisheries resources
    3. a reef.
  3. For grade B sewage – Hervey Bay waters, northern Moreton Bay waters, open waters and smooth waters within 700 metres of any of the following:
    1. a person in the water
    2. aquaculture fisheries resources
    3. a reef.
  4. For grade A sewage – there are no additional precautionary discharge distances from sensitive areas. As such, grade A treated sewage may be lawfully discharged in all waters outside prohibited discharge waters.

(See Transport Operations (Marine Pollution) Regulation 2008, schedule 6 – Nil discharge waters for treated sewage or untreated sewage from a declared ship, section 47.)

Additionally, a declared ship must not operate (which includes anchoring, berthing or mooring) in nil discharge waters unless the declared ship is fitted with a sewage holding device. A declared ship is taken not to be fitted with a sewage holding device unless a sewage holding device fitted to the ship is appropriate having regard to:

  1. the person capacity of the ship prescribed under the Transport Operations (Marine Safety) Act 1994
  2. the duration of the ship's journey in the nil discharge waters.

(See Transport Operations (Marine Pollution) Act 1995 – Declared ship operating in prescribed nil discharge waters to be fitted with sewage holding device, section 49.)

Last updated
24 August 2017