Reclaimed water is a very controversial topic. Is it helpful and a good thing for the world? Or is it a safety concern? Every person has their own opinion. Many can speak for each side of the argument. Some studies have been done that prove to be correct for both sides of the argument. Some researchers say that reclaimed water is as safe as regular water from the tap. It also helps communities which are going through droughts. It can be used to water plants, even drink if the quality is deemed high enough, and much more. Other researchers say that reclaimed water is a hazard to people because it can contain heavy metals, pesticides, and pathogens that can contaminate the water. Some of the chemicals in reclaimed water are chloride, nitrogen, and phosphorous, none of which are terribly harmful to humans, but can cause damage to plant life. Also, many people just do not like the idea of drinking or even reusing reclaimed water. Reclaimed water could continue to be a controversial topic for a while because many people like the idea of reusing it, but many think that it is disgusting and potentially dangerous.
Where does this reclaimed water come from? Well, it is from several sources. In some places, the cities will collect rain water after a storm. This water is filtered for up to a year to make it as clean as possible. Other cities might gather waste water from toilets, showers, sinks, and drains. This water goes through filter after filter after filter to ensure the cleanliness of the water. Several large cities such as Los Angeles and Miami have already tried using reclaimed water to solve their water troubles. The goal of these “experiments” is to save as much of the good water as possible, especially during droughts. These “experiments” with reclaimed water have been highly successful, as it provides people with clean water that can be used for any purpose because it is of extremely high quality.
Reclaimed water definitely has its ups and down sides. The up side is that it solves many problems for communities in need of water. Communities that are in a drought need all the water they can get. Whether it is used to drink, as the tap water, to irrigate crops and plants, or for public fountains, this water helps a lot of cities. Some reports say that it is filtered so much that it is clean enough to drink and be bottled, which has already been done in several places. The down side, however, is that there could be pathogens, such as pesticides and other chemicals, if not filtered well enough. Many people have problems with the cleanliness because they just do not believe it is of good enough quality, and rightfully so. Some communities do not have a choice, though, because there are low amounts of water in some places.
The image above directly depicts how the reclaimed water is used in a city. First, it goes to the treatment plants to be filtered and disinfected. Then, it can be sent to cities for drinking, farms for watering crops, and...