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Is Water Recycling the Future?


Water recycling could be the answer to one of the country's greatest challenges in the coming years as drought worsens because of climate change.

The Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, if signed into law, could provide $1 billion for water recycling and reuse projects, including funding for large-scale projects to ease dwindling supplies in Western states.

This explainer from Bloomberg Law offers a plain language overview of water recycling, including why direct potable reuse isn't as 'icky' as the public might think. As attention grows on these projects, public education will be a key factor to garner support. A United Nations report from 2017 also touts wastewater as the ultimate untapped resource

Featured Video: The Future of Water

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Water is a scarce resource for many communities around the globe, and this scarcity is becoming more and more widespread. Our featured video this week from Quartz Media looks out how one locality half a world away has addressed this challenge, and how the rest of us can learn from systems like these where the "future of water" has already arrived.

While this video focuses on a larger metropolitan area, there are some interesting takeaways for smaller systems as well such as:

  •  Solutions to water challenges are best solved at the individual and/or community level. 
  •  Water reuse is most likely already happening in your community and efforts can be made to change public perceptions. For example, a wastewater pipe enters the Mississippi River every 8 miles - meaning almost every community using the river as a water source is already drinking someone else's wastewater!