Deputy project manager Tangi Taoro said other boreholes were being drilled along the route of the proposed wastewater network, from the south of Muri through to the old landfill at Turangi.
Managers of the Mei Te Vai Ki Te Vai project have confirmed septic tank systems in Muri’s sensitive coastal area are contributing to the seaweed growths in Muri Lagoon.
So the geologists are gathering information about the soil and rock along the route, so waste can be piped out of Muri. Seven of the 14 boreholes will have temporary groundwater monitoring wells installed.
The drill rig is tractor-mounted and can drill approximately eight metres a day. The work is expected to take up to six weeks, through to mid-August.
Taoro said they had done work on the reticulation design, and were now investigating underground to inform a treatment plant design, and support government’s decision on the most suitable disposal method.
Earlier wastewater project consultants had met with the Ui Ariki and Aronga Mana.
Manavaroa Mataiapo Philip Nicholas said he reiterated his position that there should be “no ocean outflow” from the new wastewater project.
“We need an alternative option to reuse, recycle, revitalise our wetlands and agricultural areas,” he said.
Castalia Consultants from New Zealand have prepared a business case to construct and operate a wastewater system for Muri/Avana, which will be considered by government.
Development Coordination Division manager Lavinia Tama said the government was faced with a “significant infrastructure investment decision that will have a range of financial, economic, social and environmental impacts, both short and long term.”
She added: “Other impacts may include the ability to continue growing Muri as a tourist destination without further degrading water quality.”
The final report is expected to take 13 weeks to finalise.