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Net Zero Dorm

January 23, 2014

A Florida college dormitory recycles its water.



Recycling toilet water. I’m Bob Hirshon and this is Science Update.

When University of Miami students living in the NetZero dorm take a shower or flush their toilets, the water doesn’t drain into the regular sewage system; it goes into a series of treatment tanks and filters right next to the dorm as part of a National Science Foundation supported water-recycling project run by James Englehardt.

JAMES ENGLEHARDT (University of Miami):

So all the water from the apartment toilets, laundry, showers, sinks, dishwasher, all come out here, to the septic tank.


After going through an elaborate treatment system, the purified water is pumped back for use by the students. With many regions in the United States and around the world facing water shortages, recycling could provide relief. As for the quality of the water, Englehardt is confident.


We plan to enter this in the drinking water taste competition that we have here in south Florida against all the utilities.


I’m Bob Hirshon, for AAAS, the science society.