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Benefits of Water Recycling

1) Water recycling can decrease diversion of freshwater from sensitive ecosystems. Plants, wildlife, and fish depend on sufficient water flows to their habitats to live and reproduce. The lack of adequate flow, as a result of diversion for agricultural, urban, and industrial purposes, can cause deterioration of water quality and ecosystem health. Water users can supplement their demands by using recycled water, which can free considerable amounts of water for the environment and increase flows to vital ecosystems.

2) Recycled water may be used to create or enhance wetlands and riparian (stream) habitats. Wetlands provide many benefits, which include wildlife and wildfowl habitat, water quality improvement, flood diminishment, and fisheries breeding grounds. For streams that have been impaired or dried from water diversion, flow can be augmented with recycled water to sustain and improve the aquatic and wildlife habitat.

3) Irrigation with recycled water can reduce the need for chemical fertilizers. Some nutrients survive the water reclamation process, giving recycled water an added benefit. Many golf courses, parks, and local governments (e.g. Caltrans) have reported that fertilizer costs are reduced for landscaping that is irrigated with recycled water.

4) Production of nearly 200 million gallons of recycled water per day allows a significant reduction in the Los Angeles Basin's dependence on costly imported water and helps to replenish the groundwater used by a large percentage of the region.

5) Important by-products, such as electricity and soil amendments, are also generated during the water recycling process (resources that help protect the environment, enrich the land, and improve air quality).

6) Next to water conservation, water recycling is the only significant readily available practice that can help meet the domestic, industrial and environmental water demands that are increasing on a daily basis.

7) Recycled water replaces existing drinking water supplies for non-potable uses and is generally available at much lower prices as compared to potable water. Local businesses and industries receive an inexpensive, dependable water supply, providing them with an incentive to remain in Southern California (which is great for the economic climate and the local municipal tax base).

8) Producing water locally helps save energy by not having to pump as much imported water over the mountains into the Los Angeles Basin. These energy savings also result in improved air quality, as less energy needed to pump imported water means less fossil fueled burned to make electricity and less greenhouse gas production.

9) The evolution of proper sanitation practices has virtually eliminated waterborne disease in the U.S and contributed to a longer life expectancy. To ensure the continued protection of public health and safety, the Sanitation Districts have remained at the forefront of research and technology. Years of ongoing research, testing, and monitoring for viruses have shown that the recycled water produced by the Sanitation Districts' is pathogen-free, making it safe for public access uses including body contact. All reclaimed water produced by the Sanitation Districts' water reclamation plants regularly meets State and Federal standards and is so clean that it is virtually indistinguishable from regular tap water.

10) Public areas such as parks, golf courses, schools, and roadway greenbelts stay green, which enhances the quality of life for communities.

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