In most of our design projects, when it concerns water efficiency, we add a rainwater harvesting system and a couple more generic water conservation methods and call it a day.
There’s much more to water conservation than we may generally know. Water, being one of the most essential resources to us, needs to be given priority in every building design.
Rainwater is an essential resource that must be made most use of while setting up a site for water conservation.
The rainwater runoff can be redirected from the roofs, ceilings and slopes to be storage units for future use.
Rainwater seeps into the ground from the surface into the ground and improves the groundwater levels in the site. This helps in better vegetation growth and the overall health of the soil.
The level of contamination and reusability of water depends upon the purpose and is often subjective. Primarily, the water that is uncontaminated by any chemical or used sparingly can be recycled to give it another purpose.
These systems redirect the greywater into another channel using valves for quick reuse before potential bacterial buildup from the first use.
Greywater can be transported using pumps to carry the water vertically to a storage tank. The water is then treated before it is repurposed for the last time.
Removes unwanted large particles in the water with the help of gravity. By passing through the four layers of soil, the water in turn gets purified.
Stagnant water is made use of to grow aquatic plants. The aerobic and anaerobic bacteria present in the water purifies it.
Surface runoff of rainwater is often not given needed consideration while designing a space.
Rain gardens help temporarily hold rainwater in areas where there is a natural slope. Planting vegetation helps hold the nutrients of the soil while actively preventing surface runoff.
When it comes to maintaining vegetation, it’s easy to overwater them. One of the most effective methods to avoid the wastage of water is drip irrigation. Distributed pipelines help deliver water and nutrients in small quantities throughout the day directly into the roots of the plants.
A water pressure regulator is used to reduce the pressure of water coming into the building through the main water line. This valve brings down the pressure to a safe level so as to not cause any plumbing problems.
Most of the water use and wastage in the buildings occur in faucets and toilets. With the advancement of technology, smart plumbing fixtures help regulate water supply and wastage.
Water treatment plants remove undesirable components and decontaminate water to be used for drinking or any other desired usage.
There are two main processes involved in the system
Removing contaminants from water to convert it into a usable resource can be done through wastewater recycling. This can be done both on a small scale and large scale.
Water catchments or watersheds are places where runoff or moving water flows into. It can later be used for a variety of purposes:
In regions where the rainfall is sparse, drought-resistant landscaping is done. By planting vegetation that needs little to no moisture to grow, the plants are easy to maintain and can survive for long periods of time without water.
When designing for maximum water efficiency, the green building has the ability to control one of the most precious resources. Creating the most ideal water system for a building must never be overlooked.
Choosing methods that enhance the experience of the user and customizing to the personal needs not only makes sure that the building is environmentally friendly, but also enhances the user experience all in all.
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