Sydney off-grid champion wins rain tank battle with council

It took over 15 months but Sydney off-grid champion Kylie Ahern has won her battle with Marrickville Council to have a rain tank and disconnect from Sydney Water.

The tanks are in and will shortly be connected as part of the house renovation.

Water tests show the water is cleaner than mains water.

Kylie has posted the Sydney Water water meter to the NSW Minister for Water, Niall Blair, thanking him for helping her to conserve water, and won’t be using dam water again, just the wonderful free rain from the sky above her house.

After seven months of no discussion or questions from Council about the rain tank part of her development application the Council wrote requiring Ms Ahern to get NSW Health approval.

The barrister’s advice Ms Ahern then obtained at a cost to her of $9,630 stated clearly that no approval from a Council is required to drink rainwater.  The advice is freely available as a small PDF titled "On site legal advice", here.

Despite the legal advice Council refused to decide the issue.

But, with pressure from Kylie – meetings, emails, constant reference to the legal advice, a meeting attended by her Barrister (more costs to Kylie) – in November 2015, some 18 months since the application in May 2014, Kylie received her approval.


Now, Kylie is going public about her battle and this week another media report covered her battle, here.  

The quotes attributed to the Council, if accurate, show that the Council is a naughty teller of fibs. 

Funny in a twisted way that, when citizens such as Kylie put there hands in their pockets to conserve precious resources their efforts are abused by those entrusted with supporting citizens such as Kylie.

But her tanks are in and harvesting rain already.