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Onsite Sewage Disposal

Any home or building that is not connected to a municipal or city sewage system needs a safe method of treating and discharging sewage.

Sewage  FAQs

Requirements for sewerage systems

Island Health's role in onsite sewage is to ensure all buildings with indoor plumbing have a sewerage system that is in compliance with the Sewerage System Regulation.

Some of the key requirements include:

  1. Construction and maintenance of a sewerage system with a daily design flow of less than 22,700  litres per day must meet the Sewerage System Regulation requirements including:
    1. Single family residence or duplexes
    2. Sewerage systems which service different structures on a single parcel of land
    3. Systems that serve one or more parcels on strata lots or on a shared interest of land
  2. Larger waste water systems  of 22 700 litres per day or more must meet the Municipal Wastewater Regulation requirements under the Environmental Management Act
  3. Every owner who wants to construct, alter or repair a sewerage system must retain the services of an Authorized Person who may be a:
    1. a registered onsite waste water practitioner (ROWP)

  4. Before the construction, alteration, or repair of a sewerage system an Authorized Person must submit information respecting the designed details of the system. Sewerage System Form (pdf)
  5. Within 30 days of completing construction of the sewerage system the Authorized Person must submit to the Health Authority a signed letter certifying that system meets the requirements of the Sewerage System RegulationList of locations  / Letter of Certification (pdf)
  6. When it is not possible to install a sewerage system on a parcel of land, the owner may choose to install a sewage holding tank.  Sewage Holding Tank Permit Application and Holding Tank Construction Guidelines (pdfs)

Subdivision of Land

When subdivision applications are referred to Island Health the district Environmental Health Officer will assess the applications and provide comments back to the Approving Officer in regards to the land parcels suitability in supporting onsite sewage disposal using Subdivision Standards

Health Protection plays an important role in land development providing input on water and wastewater infrastructure.  However, we are also willing to offer recommendations from the broader “Healthy Built Environment” perspective to promote healthy community planning.

Have a complaint or concern?

If you have a health and safety concern or complaint about an onsite sewage issue, please contact your local health protection office.