Suoraan sisältöön

Real estate-specific wastewater management

The regulation of real estate-specific wastewater management changed in April 2017

Approximately 500–600 people live outside the centralised sewer system in Helsinki. The legislation regarding real estate-specific wastewater management in such cases has changed. The change of regulations regarding domestic wastewater in areas outside sewer networks took effect on 3 April 2017.

This change has no effect on new buildings, which must, even in the future, have a wastewater management system which meets the statutory treatment requirements.

Alleviations for buildings from before 2004

Significant alleviations took effect for buildings from before 2004. The statutory deadline for renovating wastewater systems by 31 October 2019 now only applies to properties located in the vicinity of a body of water or the sea or within a groundwater area.

Therefore, after the reform, the treatment requirements will only apply to real estate properties within no more than 100 metres from a body of water or the sea, or in a groundwater area suitable or used as a water supply. In other areas, the wastewater systems of properties must only be renewed in connection with certain large renovations.

This means that as the new regulations regarding domestic wastewater in areas outside sewer networks take effect, 75% of all properties are freed from the requirement to renovate their system within a defined deadline.

Action not required from all properties

No new action is required from properties with no running water and only a dry closet (outhouse), if these cause no risk of environmental pollution. Renovations are also not required for properties which are added to the sewer network or which already have a wastewater management system which meets the requirements.

The age-based exemption defined in the previous round of changes to the legislation still applies. Therefore, a system does not need to be renovated if it is in good condition, existed on 9 March 2011, and the resident(s) living on the property has been 68 years or older on that date.

Municipalities may consider the local circumstances and, if deemed necessary, issue stricter wastewater treatment orders. The environmental protection regulations in Helsinki are currently being reviewed, but the process is still in preparation.

Definitions for the tools for the use and maintenance of domestic wastewater systems in the decree

The new Government decree, which will take effect at the same time as the changes to the Act, contains further clarifications for the tools of the use and maintenance of domestic wastewater systems, including the planning and the plan itself, the assessment, and the user and maintenance instructions.



06.12.2019 19:39