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Greywater recycling in practice

In a nutshell

Getting to know how a system for greywater recycling is installed.

1 class hour

13 years old

In class

Our objectives

In this activity you will:

  • Be informed about the steps in the installation of a greywater system.
  • Discuss which are the uses of the recycled greywater.

Water-readings

Greywater recycling is the practice of reusing wastewater produced from the washbasins, bath tubes, shower drains and washing machine after a particular treatment.

The main operating parts of a greywater recycling system is:


  1. The greywater pipelines have to be separated from the . The greywater is collected in a special water storage tank before its treatment process. The size depends on the water amount treated and its material must be resistant to commonly used chemicals (e.g. chlorine).
  2. Then, the collected greywater is treated  using a set of filters and chemical substances , depending on the technology followed.
  3. The treated greywater is collected in a storage tank to be used within 24 hours.

 

Water-readings

Greywater recycling in Malta’s national swimming pool

The national swimming pool of Malta is the main venue for the national water polo leagues, various international tournaments and important ‘swimming events’. It hosts approximately 800 athletes a day.  Greywater generated from the showers is a valuable water resource, when properly treated and reused. For this purpose, a greywater recycling system was installed by the “NCWR Programme in the Mediterranean” using a new filtration technology. The system is based on advanced technology that produces water of high quality, free from microorganisms and hazardous substances. The recycled greywater is used for toilet flushing in the premises and for landscape irrigation.

 

Greywater system in a football course in Cyprus

Another example of installing a system for greywater recycling comes from Cyprus also installed in the framework of the “NCWR Programme in the Mediterranean“. In the football course of Ahnas the greywater generated from the showers and washbasins is pumped through pipes to a storage reservoir. Then, it is treated in a second reservoir. The treated greywater  is used for irrigation of the main and the secondary courts’ grass.

The football course overview 

Tanks of the greywater recycling installed

Play & learn

Greywater system in a football course

Drag and drop the main components of the greywater recycling system installed in the Ahnas football course (read the previous water readings).

 greywater-recycling-in-practice quiz-hotspot
1
2
3
4
5
6
  • 1 1 greywater pipes
  • 2 2 greywater storage tank
  • 3 3 greywater treatment
  • 4 4 treated water
  • 5 5 distribution pipes
  • 6 6 watering the course with the recycled greywater

Stop and wonder

Uses of the recycled greywater

Greywater after its proper treatment can be used for secondary uses such as the toilet flushing, car washing, watering of urban green areas, sports field irrigation and, for groundwater recharge under controlled conditions. It can be used for watering tree plantation i.e. orange, lemon trees, etc. given that it meets the defined criteria and conditions. Nevertheless, it is not allowed to be used for contact with the human body nor for watering vegetables (tomatoes, cabbages, etc). When used for irrigation it is forbidden to use sprinklers because of the risk to come in contact with the human body. Drip  irrigation or underground channels are recommended instead.

People’s attitudes towards treated greywater use

In general people tend to accept or reject the use of recycled greywater depending on the type of use. It is relatively well accepted to use greywater in watering golf courses and parks and in industry (for cooling purposes). But people are more reluctant to use it at home. Actually, the level of acceptance is influenced by the degree of contact with it: people tend to accept it when contact is minimal (for toilet flushing) and are less ready to use it for watering. Other studies show that users prefer to reuse their own greywater rather than that of communal recycling schemes.

Play & Learn

Check in which of the following activities treated greywater can be used:

It is not suitable for drinking.

Recycled greywater can be used for secondary uses such as in the toilet flushing.

Recycled greywater can be used in watering tree plantation under proper conditions but not leafy plants and vegetables.

It is not allowed to come in contact with our body and thus it's not allowed to use it in shower or bathing.

Though recycled greywater can be used in watering the urban green it is not allowed to do that with sprinklers because it may come in contact with people.

Recycled greywater can be used for secondary uses such as in watering the urban green.

Recycled greywater cannot be used for watering leafy plants and vegetables

It is not suitable for fountains because it may come in contact with people.

Water shares


Water meter

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