Reclaimed Water Used for Non-Drinking Purposes

The quality of reclaimed water varies with the treatment process being used, but the water has received enough treatment so that it is fit for a non drinking purpose. It could be that carbon- and nutrient-reduced effluent will need no further treatment to attain the quality needed for some recycling opportunities but, for others, additional advanced treatment, such as conventional filtration or membrane filtration and disinfection, may be required. Natural treatment systems, such as riverbank filtration or constructed wetlands, may also be used to improve the quality of reclaimed water. The appropriate treatment must be selected carefully to produce water of suitable quality for the intended application without unnecessarily and expensively over-purifying/over-treating. Over-treatment is non-sustainable from the perspective of energy use, carbon footprint, chemical use, and other aspects while not providing additional environmental or social benefits. As for all treatment processes, water quality must be monitored to make sure that intended quality is being produced. Regulations can also affect which treatments are selected.