Return to Education Resources Page
Water To Waste Section Two: Water / Energy Efficiency information and EPA WaterSense Program
Did you ever think the day would come when we saw $4 per gallon for gas?
Did you ever imagine lake levels so low?
Do you know how water gets to the tap?
Do you ever stand, and watch in awe, as your electric meter races round and round and round...?
Do you dread the arrival of the electricity bill?
Do we make the connection between what we do and what we pay?
Do we know that the greatest energy asset we have is
the energy and water we waste every single day?
This publication provides information and examples from other communities and other states designed to encourage you to think about your own water habits.
There is no separation of water and wastewater issues.
What goes in surely comes back out!
This is the time to find out what’s driving that meter, both at your home and at the wastewater treatment plant. Are there technologies out there for us to turn waste in to power, to turn problems in to opportunties?
This is the time to ask yourself or your government, are we making ‘water wise’ decisions?
How much is it costing us all to have clean water?
What can we do to change how we use water?
Ask yourself, do we have enough water to waste?
Or are we pouring water
down the .................
Save Water, Save Money
If all U.S. households installed water-efficient appliances,
the country would save more than
3 trillion gallons of water
and more than $18 billion dollars per year!
When we use water more efficiently, we reduce the need for costly water supply infrastructure investments and new wastewater treatment facilities,
and new energy sources to power them.
The average household water & sewer bill is at least $5-700 per year.
A few simple changes to use water more efficiently could save @ 25%
Save Water, Save Energy, Save $$$
It takes a considerable amount of energy to deliver and treat the drinking water you use everyday. American public water supply and treatment facilities consume about 56 billion kilowatt-hours (kWh) per yearenough electricity to power more than 5 million homes for an entire year.
For example, letting your faucet run for five minutes uses about as much energy as letting a 60-watt light bulb run for 14 hours.
By reducing household water use you can not only help reduce the energy required to supply and treat public water supplies but also can help address climate change.
It estimated 137.8 billion kWh would be used to supply and treat water and wastewater by 2005. Furthermore, up to 80% of that energy would be used just to move water in both public and private systems. For background on the 'Water Energy Nexus' go to: www.waterefficiency.net/we_0609_energy.html
Population and climate changes are already happening. It is imperative to plan for how those changes will impact our ability to supply clean drinking water. An absolute necessity is to utilize water-wise, cost efficient, self sustainable wastewater technology, that replenishes water resources. If we are responsible for 25% of all freshwater in the world, it’s time we pulled the plug on wasting it!
Water ~ Energy Nexus
Pictured left, at the 2007 Michigan Energy Fair, is Onsite Wastewater Board Member and Grand Traverse
County Planner John Sych (left) with our presenter
Dr. Ray Ehrhard P.E., BCEE.
a Research Associate in the Department of Energy, Environmental, and Chemical Engineering located at
Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri.
Ehrhard manages the Water and Wastewater program initiated by Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) in the early 90’s.
Ehrhard, and his group there are identifying facilities across the country who are taking unique approaches, defined by region, weather, and population, all guided by understanding the overall energy impacts of what is done and keeping water quality and energy use at the site in balance.
“You can’t sacrifice water quality for energy efficiency. They work together to achieve both goals,”
Starting in 1992, at EPRI, Ehrhard and his colleagues created a national program to encourage individual water and wastewater plants to study how they could reduce. A 2002 paper, stated water and wastewater treatment facilities account for 35% of energy used in municipalities. Electricity use in combined water and wastewater treatment and pumping in the United States is estimated to cost $6.5 billion annually.
Water To Waste Section Three: The inter-relationship between water use, wastewater, the water cycle and wastewater systems.
Water To Waste Section Four: Common sense information about how your wastewater system works
Water To Waste Section Five: Installation, siting, operation and maintenance.
Water To Waste Section Six and Seven: The many amazing things that end up in the waste stream and why we should be careful and concerned.
Water To Waste Section Eight and Nine: The state of our region - an attempt to survey wastewater systems.
Water To Waste Section Ten: The Case For Community Management
Water To Waste Section Eleven: Small community options, choices and solutions
Water To Waste Section Twelve: Understanding northwest Michigan geography and geology and how this relates to wastewater.
Water To Waste Section Thirteen: Information about different types of wastewater systems and case studies.
Water To Waste Section Fourteen: A terrible waste to waste - when there's money to be made and saved by innovation.
Water To Waste Section Fifteen: A word about who we are and our goals for the future - how you can help.
Water To Waste Section Sixteen: Gratitude to our sponsors and links to more information.
Return To Main Index
Photo Credits: ©Photos.com/JupiterImages
P.O.Box 792, Traverse City, MI 49685-0792
TEL: (231) 233-1806
For more information contact Executive Director
© 2003/4/5/6/7/8/9/10 Wastewater Education 501(c)3