The California drought has left many questioning what they can do to help improve the situation for the future. In San Diego, they’re looking to use a new wastewater purification system to help product what local officials call a “drought-proof, local water” supply, according to U-T San Diego.
“That’s water that we don’t have to import anymore,” said Kimberly Thorner, general manager of Olivenhain Water District in Encinitas, which uses recycled water for golf courses and parks. “It’s utilizing wastewater that is currently unused.”
Purple piping refers to lines designated for recycled water, which is treated to a level suitable for irrigation and industrial use, but not for drinking. Potable reuse employs reverse osmosis filters to purify sources to a level that exceeds drinking water standards, and can be blended with potable supplies.
This purple piping can funnel wastewater across the city, something that could eventually be expanded to create a network of 10 local water agencies. Whether this will help solve the drought problem in California remains to be seen, but recycled wastewater is becoming a popular way to help save resources across the country.