Public perception of desalinated versus recycled water in Australia
Water resources are limited in both quantity and quality. The global water cycle is a closed system with water molecules being continuously taken in and excreted by living organisms. In this continuum of recycling takes place an interesting debate regarding the acceptance and suitability of water recycling. Water recycling is the treatment of municipal wastewater for the replenishment of available freshwater resources and consumption. Water recycling hence closes the water cycle on a more local level with the possibility of closing water cycles for individual households, buildings, factories, towns or regions. The motivation for this activity is mostly the realization that human water consumption has increased beyond sustainable levels, resulting in extended periods of ‘drought’, depletion of environmental flows in natural water systems and the decrease in healthy levels in drinking water reservoirs, including groundwater systems.