The pros and cons of greywater recycling

| by Tom Smith
The pros and cons of greywater recycling

The pros of greywater recycling are consistent with the pros of any water recycling (rainwater, yellow water, black water):

  • A growing population — expected 420 million by mid-2050
  1. A limited water supply
  2. By 2015, it is estimated 36 states will face serious water shortages
  • Demand outpacing supply — cities like Los Angeles have a supply for three million people; however, demand is equivalent to 18 million people
  • Climate change — e.g. reduced snow pack, US projected to become more arid
  • Water contamination — bacteriological, nutrients, chlorides limiting supply
  • Industry expansion — states around great lakes using availability of water to attract industry
  • To save money — California uses 15 percent of energy for water/wastewater and the price of water increasing
  • Environmental responsibility — it's the right thing to do
  • The average American uses about 160 gallons of water each day and 25 percent of the water entering the home is used to flush toilets — an ideal use for treated greywater
  • Up to 50 percent of all water is used for irrigation — another ideal use for treated greywater.

The cons for greywater recycling are:

  • Dual plumbing is required to accommodate reuse and source separation (graywater/blackwater)
  • Must prevent inappropriate substances going down the drain
  • Health risks — avoid potential for contact and/or ingestion
  • Environmental risks are not easily evaluated — minimize cumulative impacts

Topics: Water Filtration & Water Quality, Water Quality, Water Saving Devices

Companies: Anua

Tom Smith
Tom Smith is the former director of operations and marketing at Anua. Tom is driving demand for wastewater treatment, water reuse, rainwater harvesting and odor/VOC control solutions. He has a B.A. from Duke University and an MBA from the Fuqua School of Business.

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