Greywater on the Western Slope

By Karley O'Connor 11 months agoNo Comments

Thank you to everyone who came out to our Greywater Workshop in October, hosted by Avery Ellis from Colorado Greywater.

Read below for images and more information about Greywater!

What is Greywater?

Greywater (aka Graywater) is the wastewater from the sinks, showers, tubs, and laundry machines of a home. It can be used to irrigate your landscape, re-used to flush indoor toilets or to create food & wildlife habitat in a constructed wetland.

Our workshop began with an interactive lecture that covered topics from wastewater volumes, greywater system types, plumbing parts, and Colorado state regulations. Our group discussed why new regulation is greatly needed on the Western Slope and how greywater can play an important role in water conservation.

Why should we care about Greywater?

Here on the Western Slope, responsible water use is of the utmost importance. Colorado is a headwaters state, meaning that nearly all of our rivers flow out of our state, and none flow in. While the population of Colorado continues to increase and Climate Change impacts the availability of water in the future, water managers are taking a hard look at how to make the most of our most precious resource. The average consumer uses 80 gallons of water per day. Utilizing greywater for non-potable water needs offers multiple benefits for water-conserving families.

Installing a Greywater System

After lunch, the workshop relocated to a nearby residence to install a greywater system. The system used the branched drain method, designed to capture 100% of a household’s shower and bath water by creating 2 mulch basins, which makes the wastewater useful for outdoor gardens and landscaping. We calculated the gallons per minute that flow from the residence shower head and multiplied it by the amount of time an average person showers, to determine the correct size and dimension of the mulch basin needed to capture all of the shower’s wastewater.

We dug trenches and laid pipe to direct greywater into two mulch basins.

Finished project with two mulch basins watering fruit trees and future flower beds.

Thank you!

We hope that everyone gained some insight into the world of greywater and we are excited about the opportunities to promote water conservation on the Western Slope. We would like to say thanks to Delta County Engage for allowing us to utilize the Energy Tec building and also Delicious Orchards for providing lunch.

For more info: 

For more information on Greywater, including useful information and additional links, please see Avery Ellis’ website HERE. To read more about the EPA’s stance on water use, click here.

If you are interested in Greywater and how to promote water conservation in Delta County, please email or come to WSCC’s Watershed Stewardship Committee, which meets the 2nd thursday of every month at the WSCC office, at 4:30 pm.

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