Dairy Effluent Upgrades

Supporting best practice. 

Dairy effluent includes the manure, urine, washdown water and anything else that makes its way to or is used in the dairy shed. This effluent is a significant source of nutrients to waterways in the Geographe Bay Catchment. Farmers can improve productivity on their farms by effectively reusing dairy effluent on farm while reducing this nutrient loss. 

We have been working in partnership with farmers, the Department of Water and Environmental Regulation and the dairy industry since 2020 to develop best practice guidelines for dairy effluent management. We have also supported farmers to implement best practice on their farms by upgrading their dairy effluent management systems.

As a result, 20 dairy farms have upgraded their dairy effluent systems, reducing phosphorus loads to waterways by 1900 kg/yr and nitrogen by 13,400 kg/yr. A mammoth effort!

We have also benchmarked 80% of dairy farms against the Code of Practice

Best practice upgrades include minimising the volume of effluent generated and the capture, solids separation, storage and reuse of dairy effluent.

The scope of works for upgrades may include additional pipework, pumps and sprinklers to increase the areas where effluent is applied, ensuring the area is large enough to prevent nutrient build up in the soil. Solids separation systems can also be improved with screens, solid settling ponds and traps.

Find out more about a local dairy effluent system upgrade.