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Arizona cities could pursue 'toilet to tap' but so far have taken a more indirect approach

As the combined effects of a historic drought, increasing population and a changing climate continue to roil the Southwest and its water supply, metro Phoenix cities look for ways to make every drop count.

Peoria recently approved a $2.2 million project to recover its wastewater — everything that goes down your drain — and inject it on a more mass scale into the ground, where the city pulls its drinking water.

Wastewater for decades has been an important renewable resource for Arizona cities, especially those in the West Valley that don't receive as much Colorado River water as Phoenix and its neighbors to the east.

The wastewater is typically treated and used for a number of things: irrigating non-food crops, watering city ballparks and replenishing the underground wells, or aquifers, that store drinking water.

New state rules let cities apply to send treated wastewater straight to home taps, but no Arizona city has applied yet. For now, cities use a more roundabout approach than what they'd consider "toilet to tap," even though traces of the water you flush, after replenishing aquifers, might eventually come to your kitchen sink... Read more>>>

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