• shomeraThe recycling of greywater derived from showers at mikvaot facilities (ritual baths), a collaboration between Shomera For A Better Environment together with Dr. Eran Friedler of the Technion – Israel Institute of Technology, one of Israel’s leading experts in greywater reuse, the Water Conservation Division of the Water Authority and Water Arc – a company specializing in water conservation services and technologies, seeks to pave the way for the mainstreaming of greywater recycling projects in Israel. The strategic planning and monitoring of the project is being done in conjunction with the Ministry of Health. The coordination with the Ministry of Health regarding greywater recycling is unprecedented and is integral to the pilot design.

    Concern regarding Israel’s ability to provide adequate levels of potable water is high on the national agenda. Dwindling resources coupled with growing and ongoing demand have led to Israel’s current water shortage crisis.

    Israel recycles black waters (sewage water) at unprecedented levels, which service the agricultural sector. The recycling of greywater, the relatively clean waste water from baths, sinks, washing machines and the like within the public and private sectors in Israel has not been permitted or promoted on a broad scale. This has been largely due to the concern by the Ministry of Health regarding its ability to control the level of water purity, which, if unsuccessfully managed, could have grave implications for public health.

    The mikveh, typically an institution which is a small to moderate consumer of water, serves as a pilot site which will set precedents for both small and large consumers of water. The objective of the pilot is to successfully meet all predefined targets set by the Ministry of Health for levels of water purification and thus, be eligible to receive authorization from the Ministry of Health to advance from the pilot phase to that of implementation. Once this has been achieved, the recycled waters will be designated for reuse in the flushing of toilets and irrigation of open spaces, which, in a full-scale recycling operation, entails a potential savings of 40% of potable water consumption.

    This precedent of an authorized greywater recycling project will facilitate future, decentralized initiatives within the public and business sectors – to incorporate greywater recycling into their existing or planned facilities.

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