Standards & laws
Stormwater - Your legal obligations
The EPA is responsible for the control of stormwater pollution through the Environment Protection Act 1993 (The Act). It provides the regulatory framework to protect the South Australian environment and is supported through a suite of subordinate legislation and regulatory tools including the Environment Protection (Water Quality) Policy 2015 (the Water Quality Policy).
The Act places a general obligation on you to take all reasonable and practicable measures to minimise environmental harm caused by pollution and promotes ecologically sustainable development.
The Water Quality Policy is second-level legislation and offers more specific protection for the state’s waters. It prohibits the pollution of the stormwater system and our natural waters. The policy has general obligations which every person, business and industry must comply with as well as specific obligations for particular activities.
Clauses 10 and 11 of the Water Quality Policy states that a person must not discharge pollutants listed in Schedules 2 and 3 of the Policy into any waters. Furthermore, those pollutants known as Class 1 and listed in Schedule 2 must not be deposited onto land where they are likely to enter waters.
The definition of waters includes the stormwater system. This means that listed pollutants cannot be placed in the stormwater system or on land where they may enter the stormwater system.
Failure to comply with these obligations may result in a $300 fine, an Environment Protection Order or a prosecution.
The Stormwater Pollution Prevention Codes of Practice look more specifically at preventing stormwater pollutions and are linked to the Water Quality Policy and are enforceable by the issuing of an Environment Protection order under the Environment Protection Act 1993.