Most of the companies installing such systems have no staff with relevant formal qualifications or any knowledge whatever of how to design such a system. They purchase these systems from manufacturers who sell them as products without guarantee, expecting them to be sold by or to professional engineers who can satisfy themselves as to their suitability. The companies selling these products often no longer employ the engineer who designed their product, and their representatives are not qualified process engineers. In any case, they are salesmen, not consultants. These manufacturers make clear in their quotations that no guarantees are offered, and all is at the client’s risk, but all too often clients think they have covered themselves when in fact no one who understands these systems has looked at risk to the client. In our experience, the companies offering these packaged systems act in good faith. We have experience of Clearwater, Conder, WPL, Titan / Entec, Biotank and many other manufacturers’ plants. In every case, the package plant vendor made clear in their quotation that no guarantees were offered, and the clients’ representatives (usually architects) failed to notice that they were buying a big green box with no guarantee of anything with respect to performance. In most cases, installers of these systems do not understand how to properly specify, install, or maintain the systems, and are at a loss when it comes to a plant which is not working properly. They do no valid tests to prove that the plant works before they leave site. They do not train the client or their staff. They are usually however the last to admit this. Most of the plants we have visited recently have actually never worked, and a high proportion of them can not be made to work without radical modification, having been badly specified or installed in the first place.
A word to architects: many of the examples above were specified by architects, in collaboration with package plant installers. Package plant installers are not professional engineers, and one should note that quotations from package plant suppliers almost always specifically avoid offering process guarantees. Most of the previous examples cost architects in money and more importantly in reputation. Consult a professional engineer who is not trying to sell equipment when specifying this sort of machinery: it will save money. Installers might describe themselves as drainage engineers, or even consulting engineers, but prospective clients should ask them who is designing their system. Why not ask them if their Professional Liability Insurance covers them for design of process plant? Insurance companies are shrewd judges of a company’s abilities. A wise client will ask to see that a Chartered Chemical Engineer has oversight of the design specification, and that valid performance tests and process guarantees are offered. No number of years of experience of selling non-guaranteed packages designed by a third party gives the ability to properly specify, design, install, commission, or troubleshoot these plants. This does not stop any number of companies from attempting to do so. Often they get lucky, but it can be an expensive gamble for clients who find out that with no guarantees, they are the losers when the plant does not work.
It’s not a widely published fact, but that’s no reason why it should not be a widely acknowledged problem. The world’s supply of fresh water is slowly running dry. Forty percent of the world’s population is already reeling under the problem of scarcity.
Most of the diseases plaguing the world are water-borne. And while there is a child born every eight seconds in America, there is a life taken every eight seconds by some water-borne disease in other parts of the world.
Is it the lopsided distribution of fresh water that is causing climate change, or is it the climatic change that is causing this lopsided distribution? The fact is that there is a significant climate change, and as a consequence of this change, some regions are becoming drier while others are getting wetter. Some parts of the world are experiencing greater desertification, while others are suffering category 4 and 5 hurricanes.
According to the United Nations, water scarcity is amongst the most serious crises facing the world. And things are only getting worse.
Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan of the erstwhile USSR, Chile, Mexico, Paraguay, Argentina, Peru and Brazil in Latin America, parts of China and the Middle East especially Iran, and more than 25 countries of Africa are all suffering from varying degrees of desertification.
Global weather has gone awry. It is making poor countries poorer. Countries that are already facing drought and famine are getting less and less water. For how long can these countries run on dry?
Nowhere is the situation worse than in Africa. Almost 40 million people in 19 countries are facing imminent food shortage. Much of the livestock there will perish. The growing water shortage will make food scarcer, potable water less accessible and water-borne diseases even more rampant. And the number of people who will suffer all this is expected to touch more than 500 million by the 2025. And the global consequence: A greater dependence on international aid.
And this problem is not just limited to Africa. No one can tell which part of the globe will be next.
Blame this on nature. It’s most convenient. But fact is, much of the blame belongs to increasing consumption and improper usage.
At every opportunity nature reminds us by what it does and what it doesn’t, that it is one of the forces we have little control over. So there’s no way we can stop the rain or start it. But what we can do is become more water-efficient – get more from every gallon of water. And the only way to do this is to recycle and reuse waste water. Water is the giver of life. It has no substitute. And every drop counts!
Many believe that the next world war is likely to be fought on the issue of water. Even though the world is two-thirds water, most of it is not potable, and much of it is not usable for any other purpose as well.
And we are busy consuming and contaminating whatever is left of it, as if it were a non-depletable resource. In this blog, I shall make an attempt to identify ways to make the best use of water, an increasingly scarce resource, by recovering it from wastewater, whether we intend to reuse the water so recovered or let it just charge our ground water reserves.
This is aimed at a wide cross-section of people involved in taking corrective action across the world policy makers, administrators, municipal engineers & scientists, engineers & administrators in industries vested with the responsibility of wastewater treatment and management, industrial & residential property builders, academics, students and just about everyone who cares about posterity.
[This blog has a Help Desk. Please post your queries there, with your Contact details if you want to be contacted. If your query is simple enough, I’ll try and answer back thru Help Desk. If it can only be answered by a specialist, I’ll try to identify a Subject Matter Expert (SME) in the relevant realm, and get him/ her to reply, thru this Help Desk or thru email. If your query is consultative in nature, she/ he may expect a fee, though.]
Wastewater Treatment dates back to the early days of the Romans. The Roman towns and villages had stone trenches that collected wastewater from each home and channeled it to a nearby landfill. Each home had a sophisticated “flush toilet” system that enabled people to go to the bathroom in their own homes and have the wastewater drain out to the stone channels that took the wastewater to the landfill.
In some ways, the Roman system was actually better than modern wastewater treatment systems. Along the way to the landfill, effluent from Roman toilets would be exposed to the sun’s ultra violet light – thereby killing many of the harmful bacteria. What was left for the landfill was anaerobic bacteria that digested much of the waste that was covered by soil or fresh wastewater.
In 2010, America faces a bit of a problem as far as wastewater treatment. Traditional septic systems have never kept up with modern technology. Faecal matter is still drained into a tank and left to rot before it filters down into the ground – and eventually into your drinking water! The vast majority of septic systems now in place are nearing the end of their lifespan. Some have been in active production for nearly 70 years!
What is happening is that with population densification, people are putting increasing demands upon the earth to clean up their messes is especially true for wastewater treatment. In 1850, Wyatt Earp could visit the outhouse and the it wouldn’t end in “Billy the Kid’s” drinking water! That might seem like a silly analogy, but that is exactly what is happening today. People must learn to see the big picture. The water table knows no boundaries. The water table services an entire valley, not just one or two individual homes. So when you have 300 homes crowded into a valley, and everyone is on septic tanks, then you are literally drinking from each others septic tanks! How dumb is that?
Sadly, health departments pretty much everywhere, and the bureaucrats that run them, have not kept up with modern developments in waterwater treatment. They remind me of the bureaucrat that wanted to shut down the US Patent office in 1898 because he felt that everything that could be invented – had already been invented! We can only hope that his descendants are not still working in government agencies!
In reality, we have learned that there are a number of very effective and practical solutions that can be practiced in wastewater treatment. One of those includes a self-contained anaerobic biocycle chamber. This 500 gallon chamber operates independent of it’s environment and produces effluent that is virtually indistinguishable from clean clear drinking water! The effluent is higher in nitrogen than drinking water so it is apparently used for fertilizing plants, shrubs and flowers. Any nutrients that are not taken up by the plants are evaporated into the atmosphere so that they can rain down on other plants that need them.
These solutions are typical of new developments in septic system technology and wastewater treatment. Consumers are understandably very happy about not having to face those massive $40,000 septic field re-building costs. For a fraction of the cost consumers are now able to take a huge green step.
My research indicates, as well, that some of these companies will soon be able to offer power conversion systems for their wastewater treatment systems. Can you imagine the pleasure of being able to move “off-grid” in terms of both sewer service and power supply?
The next decade will be a very interesting one as these and other technologies develop.
Nick Walsh is a professional researcher and information technology analyst with 30 years experience in alternative health care, strategic information technology, and entrepreneurial development. Nick maintains several blogs on alternative health care, anti-aging, green energy systems, technology, and internet marketing in general.
Nick has been a successful internet marketer since 1996. Consistently reviewing the internet marketing industry, Nick is always up to date with the latest successful internet marketing tools and resources.
Water is one of the most valuable resources we have around our home. We use it to cook, clean and drink with along with many other tasks. In fact, we often do not think about just how much water we us in our homes.
Collecting waste water can help save a tremendous amount of money over time, if it can be properly utilized. For thousands of people, using their waste water for another purpose is a way they can save on the typical expenses used in the home so that their efforts can pay off in the long run.
Technically, waste water is the water that is used for a single purpose, then removed from the home itself. For example, if you clean an apple by using rinse water from the sink. The water that was used and is now running down the drain is waste water.
Normally, we tend to use water one time in our homes and that is it, even if the water was barely used or not contaminated at all. While such water is no good for drinking, it can be used for a number of purposes such as washing our cars, homes, porches, patios and many other jobs as well. The more ways that waste water can be effectively reused, the less new water is needed to do many of these jobs around the home.
Reusing Waste Water on Your Property
There are a number of ways you can reused waste water on your property. By employing just some of these measures, you can wind up saving a considerable amount of money in the long term. This is because collecting and reusing waste water can save money and effort while having a significant impact on your home environment.
What follows is just some of the many ways that you can reuse waste water that can save you time, effort and money in the home.
Shower: When you are waiting for the shower to heat up, the cold and lukewarm water that runs out of the tap first is just going down the drain. Instead, put a bucket underneath the tap when you first start to run the water. This way, you are capturing all the water that otherwise would go down the drain. Considering how far your water heater is from the shower, you could save quite a bit of water in just a short period of time.
Use Rinsing Tubs: If you have items that need to be properly rinsed, instead of running it under the tap you can fill up two tubs instead which will save you a considerable amount of water. In the first tub, place just a splash of vinegar which you will use first on your clothing items. The vinegar will rid the fruits and vegetables of their residue, wax and oils first, then they can be dunked in the second, clean water tub. This action can save you a considerable amount of time by rinsing all of your clothes at once and save money by limiting the amount of water that you use.
In addition to clothes, you can do the same with dirty dishes as well. Running taps can waste a tremendous amount of water. By using tubs, you not only can save a considerable amount of water, you can reuse the dishwater for other purposes as well, saving you even more money. When you consider that running water is heated and the power comes from your home, the impact of using rinsing tubs becomes a lot more attractive.
Redirect Sink Drains: If you really want to save a large amount of money, try running your sink drains into barrels or bins for reuse. The money you save may be quite considerable over time if you reuse the water effectively. Naturally, you will have to remind yourself to never pour anything toxic or dangerous down the drains in the first place. This means that if the sink drain should clog for some reason, using natural or biochemical drain cleaners while disconnecting the barrels before rinsing will need to be done first.
However, the water you reclaim that otherwise would run right down the drain can be used for a number of different areas including watering your plants and garden. Of course, watering these areas will take a few special precautions such as making sure that you do not use any water with soap or vinegar since it may harm the plants. Plus, you can use this water for washing down the siding to your home, driveway or porch areas. Wash your car, bike or flush out the gutters of your home as well.
There are a number of uses for this type of water, just be sure you know what it consist of before using it on any plants or sensitive items that may not react well otherwise. Plus, you will need to keep this water away from your pets and children as well. Children are especially in danger since they can drown in just a few inches of water if they fall in headfirst and are knocked unconscious or are unable to get out. So seal the opening around the bin and only let the water from the drains inside.
You’ll want cover your water for another reason as well. Mosquitoes in the spring and summer can be a real nuisance, so covering your water bins are a must. Plus, if they manage to breed inside the water they can spread diseases as well. A little bit of caution now can prevent a great deal of misery later. So be sure to take a little time to protect the waste water bins that you have created.
Waste water can be very useful around your home. A little money in purchasing or creating these water bins as well as the accessories they need can save you a lot of money in the long run as you heat up less water and use more of the waste water around your home.
The methods above are designed to help you in the reusing your waste water in the home and instantly. By using these methods you will soon see just how much waste water you literally wash down the drain.