The Mackay South Water Recycling Facility was built in 2008 to treat sewage from approximately 68,000 people in the Mackay Region. The recycling scheme allows for most of the effluent water (approximately 90 percent) produced from the plant to be used by cane farmers in the area.
The two main benefits for the rivers and reefs at this plant are:
1. Reduces the nutrient load discharged into Bakers Creek and the ocean. Last year an estimated 27,800Kg of Total Nitrogen and 3,500kg of total phosphorus were diverted from the receiving environment to be reused on sugar cane. If the nutrients had been discharged into the waterways these additional loadings would add to the cumulative load and have the potential for harm to the ecosystem.
2. Over the last year alone, Mackay South was able to harness over 5,000ML of effluent and divert it to be stored and used by local cane farmers, thus preventing the need for that amount of water to be extracted from bores.