Wodonga Council
Environmental nuisances

Page URL: https://www.wodonga.vic.gov.au/Services/Safety-Health-and-Wellbeing/Community-safety/Environmental-nuisances

Environmental nuisances

 /  ServicesSafety, Health and WellbeingCommunity safetyEnvironmental nuisances

Sometimes activities undertaken by others impact on residents and members of the community.

We may be able to help you resolve the issue if the activities fail to comply with the conditions of a permit, or are determined to be excessive or a nuisance under the Public Health and Wellbeing Act.

A nuisance may relate to noise, dust, odours, pollution and waste. It must be offensive or dangerous to health, not just annoying.

Determining what constitutes a nuisance is varied and open to legal interpretation.

Noise

The Environmental Protection Agency's Annoyed By Noise? information booklet can help you find the best way to address common residential noise issues.

It also provides advice on factory noise, music noise from public premises, motor vehicle and traffic noise, train/tram noise and other noises.

The table on page 11 lists prohibited times for noisy equipment used on residential premises.

Odours

Offensive odours are those which are offensive to the senses of human beings and adversely affect local amenity or enjoyment of the environment. Some common sources of odour include:

  • Compost or greenwaste;
  • Rubbish;
  • Landfill gas; and
  • Anaerobic leachate (water contaminated by waste).

Residents impacted by offensive odours are advised to contact the Environment Protection Authority (EPA) directly on 1300 EPA VIC (1300 372 842).

The EPA is the statutory authority responsible for administering the Environment Protection Act 1970, which covers offensive odours.

We work closely with the EPA regarding odour complaints by providing assistance when required. But as the environmental regulator, it is the EPA’s role to set and enforce environmental standards and assess risk and minimise harm to human health and the environment.

If you are affected by offensive odours or become aware of other pollution, please contact the EPA. In order for the EPA to take action, the odour must be verified and our environmental health team may be called upon to assist in the Wodonga boundary.

Pollution

We investigate air (including wood smoke), noise, stormwater and land pollution. You can contact the community focus team on (02) 6022 9300 or the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on 1300 372 842 to report any of these.


Air

Air quality in Victoria is protected by two state environment protection policies or SEPPS, which are adopted by government to protect Victoria's air environment. For more information on air pollution guidelines, measuring and the main types of pollutants, please see the EPA's website. There is also information available on wood smoke and applicable legislation.



Stormwater

Stormwater is surface run-off from rain and storm events that enters the drainage system. It carries many pollutants, including leaves, sediment, oil and other hydrocarbons, that are a major cause of pollution in our rivers, creeks, lakes and bays. Improving stormwater quality is a long-term process that involves educating residents and businesses about preventing stormwater pollution at its source and treating stormwater before it enters our waterways.


Cleaner stormwater provides us with new opportunities for stormwater harvesting and reuse. This helps us to protect our precious water reserves. Councils play a significant role in improving the environmental management of urban stormwater. This includes obligations under the State Environment Protection Policy (Waters of Victoria).


The EPA has created a Reducing stormwater pollution – a kit for home and business to guide locals in reducing stormwater pollution. North East Water ensures the delivery of high-quality water to Wodonga residents. For any stormwater pollution concerns or complaints, please phone our community focus team on (02) 6022 9300.



Land

The EPA assists responsible planning authorities, including us, on the management of contaminated land sites. Sites that have been contaminated by former waste disposal, industrial and similar activities are frequently discovered during changes to land use. In most cases, these can be managed at the time that the change of land use occurs.

More information is available on the EPA's website on land pollution and the Priority Sites Register.