UBC Graduate Research

Assessment of alternative water systems : final report Ebrahimi, Ghazal; Cheung, Ivan


Given the increasing demands for water conservation, some water systems have been designed to allow the use of rainwater and wastewater streams for non-potable uses within a building. Unfortunately, these alternative water systems usually encounter issues that led to them being shut off. This assessment examines the challenges and issues of several alternative water systems within the region around the University of British Columbia to inform the university on future building projects on campus. The alternative water systems were analyzed from interview questions from four case studies based on six factors that are believed to be influential to the successful implementation of an alternative water system. These factors include cost, reliability, commissioning, operations and maintenance, occupant education, and occupant perception of the water system. While the main operation (water treatment) was done very well due to regulatory pressure, many other aspects of the implementation of the alternative water system that supports the operation is somewhat lacking. Together, these factors lead to large issues that irritated occupants, or major cost in repairs to bring the system back to expected operational parameters. From the analysis, appropriate recommendations are given to support future implementation of alternative water systems at the University of British Columbia. Disclaimer: “UBC SEEDS provides students with the opportunity to share the findings of their studies, as well as their opinions, conclusions and recommendations with the UBC community. The reader should bear in mind that this is a student project/report and is not an official document of UBC. Furthermore readers should bear in mind that these reports may not reflect the current status of activities at UBC. We urge you to contact the research persons mentioned in a report or the SEEDS Coordinator about the current status of the subject matter of a project/report.”

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