LOS ANGELES — Would you drink a glass of wastewater turned into drinking water?
A California company is hoping you at least give it a try before you answer the question.
“Toilet to Tap” is the nickname given to wastewater that is treated so it can be recycled for human use.
Orange County has had a plant that purifies wastewater and pumps it back into the groundwater supply for about a decade now.
Now the county is working to convince the public that the water is indeed clean and safe to drink.
Just recently, the Orange County Water District set up a stand in Hollywood to give away free ice-cold bottled water.
They had a little trouble giving away the product to some, but others had no problem trying it.
“Someone put that down and it wasn’t on promotion and said ‘Would like to try that?’ I’d be thinking no, really. But I think because of the promotion and they’ve actually stood there drinking it themselves and the promotion guys are drinking it, and after tasting it myself, it’s absolutely fine. I was thinking, you know, do you actually get bits of poo in it. And he said ‘Absolutely not.'”
“We’ve recently, through the use of legislation passed by the state of California, are able to bottle water produced by our facility. And our facility, what it does, is it takes treated waste water, purifies it to beyond drinking water standards, and then replenishes the local ground water aquifer in Orange County which is the main source of drinking water for about 2.4 million people.”
Orange County is expanding its operations, but the water district has no plans to actually bottle the water.
It set up the stand to try to get people to accept the idea of recycled wastewater so it could eventually pump it directly into the water system.