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Use of recycled water in industry: Guidance Tool

Posted in Research by Kate Archdeacon on May 3rd, 2010

Source: Smart Water Fund

Victoria University and the Smart Water Fund have developed a guidance tool for industrial water users to address issues associated with recycled wastewater systems and increase uptake across the state.  The user-friendly guide, ‘Guidance for the Use of Recycled Water by Industry’, is designed to inform industrial water users on recycled water and how systems can be installed, with an emphasis on reticulated treated wastewater.

“As part of the project we engaged five different industries in Victoria and identified common concerns about reticulated treated wastewater, such as corrosion, water quality and company image when associated with using recycled water,” said project manager at Victoria University, Professor Stephen Gray.

“Across the board industries were unsure of its applicability to their business and some were reluctant to install recycled systems, despite the water savings they could make,” Professor Gray said.

Victoria University identified nine different categories of water use that are common across different industries. Each category has its own water quality requirements, human exposure levels and hazards.

“After identifying the most common water needs for industries in Victoria, we conducted a thorough literature review to provide a comprehensive and sound base on which to make recommendations,” Professor Gray said.

Based on the literature review, Victoria University developed a quick scan ‘water reduction tool’ and decision support framework (DSF) and trialled it on the five industries, each having different water use needs.

“The trials were received positively, with four of the five companies successful in identifying a water-saving measure for further investigation.” Professor Gray said.

“Depending on the structure of your business, recycled water systems can make water savings of more than 50 per cent, which improves the financial sustainability of your business in the long-term and reduces your impact on the environment.

“Wastewater recycling also provides additional benefits for companies where rainwater tanks are not an option, or higher levels of certain minerals and substances are beneficial.”

The guidance tool has been recognised by industry bodies in Victoria and nationally, including the dairy and food industries, as a well-rounded and accurate document for industries to make an informed decision on recycled water.

The guidance tool has also been referenced in a number of reports and websites, including VicWater and recycledwater.com.au

Read more about the project on SmartWater.

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