The best tool to protect valuable water resources is, of course, conservation. But it isn’t the only tool.
Recycled water helps maximize the use of fresh water supplies for the production of potable water. In some cases, it supplements the water available for drinking.
Reuse programs – especially for large irrigation users like golf courses and homes, as well as for industrial purposes like power plants and manufacturers – ensure that the cheapest water is available for in home and business use.
Overall, the largest obstacle to implementing reuse outside of capital costs is managing nonsense about the safety and cleanliness of recycled water. Education programs in schools, through local media and online underscore how safe reuse water is, and help remove the so-called “yuck” factor. Just ask the folks in Southern California!
All water is recycled anyway, whether it’s nature or the treatment plant that does it. Anyone living downstream from any other community is already using recycled water. Think of the Mississippi River. People in the community upstream take water, treat it, use it and treat it again, only to release it back to the river. The next community does the same thing. And the next.
By the time that water gets to New Orleans, some say it’s gone through at least 13 people! That’s not yucky. It’s pretty cool.