A non-partisan, neutral perspective supporting diversity in the color of water

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Top Greywater University Denied Greywater Use

If one examines the map of Graywater States at the bottom of the blog, Colorado stands out like a BTG. The irony is that Colorado State University is one of the top greywater universities in research, yet Colorado's water law, especially applied to greywater,  is a little different than most western states. Oh, they recognize the value of end-of-life greywater, just not graywater greywater. So imagine the horror of the University of Colorado building a green dormitory, but not being able to use the greywater as planned to maintain the green building status.

Yes, the Boulder Daily Camera reports that "convoluted health regulations and state law prevent the university from using the "graywater" system -- which could save at least 1 million gallons of water every year at Williams Village North"..."CU has spent $230,000 on a plumbing system in the Williams Village North building capable of recapturing water from showers and sinks, sending it to a collection tank to be disinfected through a filtration system and then re-circulating it through separate plumbing system that would only be used for toilets..."

I am certain this is an embarrassment for the school with the first zero waste sports stadium in the nation.
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Let Your Light Shine
~University of Colorado School Motto


  1. Talk about putting the cart before the horse! Did the University of Colorado think they were exempt from the rules? We have to wonder what the school was thinking when they invested so much into a green venture, because I have a hard time believing that the university did not know the water laws of their state.
    This quarter of a million dollar mistake sort of reminds me of that film, "Build it and they will come." Did the university gamble thinking that the powers that be would see all the pluses of grey water? If so, kudos to the university for breaking the rules to make rules – sometimes it works.
    What I do not understand is why the state would not want this, but on the other hand, we all no money talks and water is control. If the school were exempt then communities might get it in their heads to follow suit. Towns that become independent of others for water resources cannot be controlled as those who are.
    It is all awful, we are told we have freedom, but in reality our freedoms are based on those who know how to play the game of chess. Debora W.

  2. What a shame that the university spent this much time, attention, and money on what should be an effective waste water plumbing solution, and then they can’t even use it! Is there no way they can get around the rules, perhaps by making a few adjustments or changes to the system or making some kind of diversion? That’s a lot of water that’s not being saved each year and I can’t believe that there isn’t a solution.