Unfortunately, on a personal scale, this change has not yet been drastically applied to the home. Although there are recycling bins that help the individual reduce their own carbon footprint, there hasn’t been much else to help the household recycle further. One area where we could improve is water recycling.
Today, the majority of houses make use of potable water (drinking water) for almost every activity in the house. From watering the garden to flushing the toilet, the water source used is generally drinkable. To put things into perspective, according to the ABS, the “estimated household water consumption for Victoria was 367 gigalitres”, which is a lot of drinking water literally going down the drain.
Water recycling is no new concept, especially in the commercial sense. With agriculture farms benefiting tremendously from grey water (essentially any domestic wastewater produced, excluding sewage), substantial amounts are saved annually. By applying this very same concept to the home, it becomes evident that water recycling for households is the next step to reducing your carbon footprint and saving money on your water bills in the long run.
Advantages of water recycling at home
The most apparent benefit of using recycled water in your home would be the reduction of water bill rates. The savings act very similarly to how solar panels save on electricity with the prime returns being evident in the long run. By using recycled water, you hold the benefit of being able to water your garden during droughts or water restrictions allowing you to have a beautiful green lawn all year round.
Aside from that, the use of recycled water allows for fewer water resources to be used which helps preserve water resources for a longer period of time. You will also be reducing the demand on your local community’s water supply which can lead to great reliefs during a water restriction.
By making use of recycled water in your home, you reduce the amount of wastewater entering the sewers or on-site treatment systems. Overall, the use of water recycling at home is highly beneficial to both the homeowner and the local community with lesser resources being used or wasted.
Disadvantages of water recycling at home
Although uncommon, there are a number of potential health risks that are associated with recycled water due to pathogens being potentially present. According to Recycled Water, the environmental health risks associated with recycled water is manageable through wastewater treatment or by “carefully managed use” of recycled water.
There are also potential risks to the environment whereby the recycled water could contain an excess of salinity, sodicity, sodium, chloride, nitrogen, phosphorus, boron, or surfactants. It is important to note that these elements are not dangerous to the person and only impact plants. This point should be taken with a grain of salt bearing in mind that the lion’s share of water being used in agriculture is recycled water.
The final word on water recycling
Recycling is the future – there is no question about it. By reducing waste output at a residential level, communities will thrive better with lesser issues relating to any water restrictions or droughts. Through adding a water recycling process into your home, you are also acting as a responsible member of society and in consideration for the future generations to come.