Wastewater management systems in the Orange County water district have proved to be effective and become an illustration of potential solutions for areas where droughts are severe. One of the major benefits of the system and using treated wastewater is the provision of access to high-quality drinking water in territories affected by droughts. The agricultural sector also benefits as irrigation can take place whenever it is needed with little attention to the natural disaster mentioned above (Saul). However, these systems are often rather costly and require substantial investments.
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The process used at Water District’s Groundwater Replenishment System facility of Orange County (California) includes three stages. First, sewage water is treated in a microfiltration tank where bacteria and other organisms are handled (Orlowski). After that, a stage of reverse osmosis starts. Finally, water goes through UV light that destroys organisms or particles that remained while certain minerals are added. Many alternative strategies are being employed to address the problem. For instance, water use reduction is one of the most common methods across the globe (Saul). Wastewater management systems also imply the use of bacteria and microorganisms to treat water in a more natural way (Tomei et al. 81). These methods are often less costly and more environmentally friendly as compared to wastewater management plants.
Irrespective of the obvious benefits of such strategies, people often have negative feelings as to the idea of water reuse. For instance, people in Orange County stress that poor people will have to use the treated water while rich Californians will have access to better drinking water. However, people living in Bari (an Italian city) have positive attitudes towards the facility and using treated water as it is the only available option that helps during droughts (Tomei et al. 81). Therefore, raising people’s awareness is essential to ensure positive public opinion.
Orlowski, Aaron. “Yes, You Can Drink It – And You Probably Are: O.C. Toilet-To-Tap Recycled Water Program Is Expanding.” The Orange County Register. 2015, Web.
Saul, Jens-Peter. “Wastewater Treatment: An Undervalued Driver of Sustainability.” Huffington Post. 2017, Web.
Tomei, M. Concetta, et al. “Enhanced Biological Wastewater Treatment to Produce Effluents Suitable for Reuse.” Cultural Theory: An Anthology, edited by Despo Fatta-Kassinos, et al., Springer, 2016, pp. 79-107.