A Problem Solved

Northland Farming Lifestyles Magazine – March 2010

“An enterprising Southland man, who invented an effortless solution for applying effluent to farm paddocks and at the same time reducing the risk of leaching, believes his recent award affirms the product’s worth to the dairy industry.

Lindsay Lewis, of Invercargill, has received numerous awards for his entry — the Clean Green Effluent System, in the South Island Agricultural Field Days at Waimumu and Lincoln, as well as Mystery Creek at Hamilton and also Environment Southland Awards.

“I created Clean Green Effluent System for a friend who had a wish list for the system, which included the capacity to be environmentally friendly, took less man hours to operate and used materials with similarities to that of the portable irrigators to spray stock effluent.

“The result was a system that uses water pressure and timers to stop the flow of effluent from a paddock and redirect it to another before it becomes saturated.

This environmentally friendly solution particularly provides for farmers whose farm land has a tendency towards saturated soil.

Effluent is applied at a rate of half a millimetre over 24 hours, ensuring that all effluent stays in the root base and the pasture’s root system is given sufficient nutrients.

There is a growing movement to protect rural waterways and harbours from farm runoff, notably with huge planting programmes, with dairying coming in for its fair share of criticism. At the National Fieldays at Mystery Creek this year, the winner of the Environmental Award was the Clean Green Effluent System, from the company of the same name.

The system uses a solids removal filter which filters out water for re-use, leaving an effluent residue which is used for spraying out as paddock fertiliser at a rate sufficient for plant nutrients, but not too much to cause leaching properties.

The system re-uses shed and yardwashing water to the extent that usage drops from the norm of 50 to 70 litres per cow to as low as 18 to 20 litres. The effluent disposal system is expected to come into its own as various local bodies in many areas of the country move to tighten up farm pollution and water standards.”