The National Research Council has just released a report that outlines the benefits, and the increasing need, to create drinking water from wastewater. The viability of this approach was a central point to Braden Allenby’s keynote at the recent GeoDesign Summit, used to illustrate the need for us to manage and adapt to climate change rather than to take an over-simplified view that climate change is a problem rather than a condition.
The report outlines a wide range of reuse, and acknowledges the many water recycling efforts that are underway across the country, including the use of non-potable water for industrial applications. The report asserts that we can significantly increase the nation’s total available water resources, particularly in coastal areas facing water shortages.
The report suggests more coordinated research into areas that could guide water reuse appropriately, and also suggests that we revisit the regulatory framework in order to streamline oversight and ensure a high level of public health.
It’s good to see these practical answers to ongoing resource allocation and use, particularly with water where there is such a finite global quantity and a need to introduce greater efficiency.