Wastewater Treatment in France
Information on the Assainissement Non Collectif (ANC) privately-owned waste water treatment plants and how to managing the system on your property in France...As elsewhere in Europe, in France used waste water cannot be discharged without appropriate treatment either via a private waste water treatment system or a municipal waste water plant.
- Assainissement Non Collectif (ANC) are privately-owned waste water treatment plants. This term is used regardless of the size of the treatment plant - the septic tank of a family home or waste water treatment plant for a large hotel.
- Assainissement Collectif describes all municipal waste water treatment plants regardless of size.
French RegulationsThe Maire (Town Hall) and the organisations SPANC (Service Public d'Assainissement Non-Collectif) and SATESE (Service d'Assistance Technique à l'Exploitation des Stations d'Épuration) have roles to play within the regulating of safe treatment of waste water. The French government has two technical regulations (arrêtés) describing:
- All waste water systems up to 20 "Population Equivalents" (arrêté du 7 septembre 2009).
- All waste water systems above 20 PE (arrêté du 22 juin 2007).
Regulation for Waste Water Systems (up to 20 PE)The vast majority of the private systems are used for privately-owned residential houses and fall under this regulation. The property owner is responsible for having a good functioning waste water system and if this is not the case, the system has to be renewed. SPANC has the responsibility to visit and advise on all existing systems by the end of 2012.
Preparing for installationAn owner has the choice between:
- Septic tank plus drainage pipes, sand filter or a zeolite filter or
- Package waste water treatment (with government approval)
During and after installationOnce finished (and in some cases during installation) an appointment is made for the work to be inspected by SPANC. If it complies with regulations, a certificate of conformity (Certificate de conformité) is issued. Inspections are not free; payment is made by the property owner to SPANC. Following that, SPANC is obliged to perform a minimum of one inspection visit every eight years, to ensure that the private installation is properly maintained and functioning correctly. The cost of installation of a private waste water system is carried entirely by the property owner. However if the system chosen runs without electricity, a zero percent interest loan (éco-prêt à taux zéro) is offered by the state.
- Find out more from the Ministère de l'Écologie
Regulation for Waste Water Systems (above 20 PE)In project of this size a proper study/design is made to ascertain the correct sizing of the waste water treatment. Also the required purification performance will depend on the local situation. The owner/engineer are free on the choice of the treatment process so long as it guarantees the quality of the treated effluent which will have to be regularly measured (usually once a year) by the owner.
Information supplied by Keith Lacey & Thomas Neve of Bioverte Environnement At 3 Rue du Moulin, 53300 Vauce, Mayenne Tel: 02 43 08 97 54 / Mobile: 06 84 38 58 51 / email Copyright © Bioverte Environnement All Rights Reserved