The conservation of water across the globe is not a concern for the future, but a pressing issue for us to face today. This issue is of even more importance with regard to the healthcare sector, where the values of health and sustainability are intrinsically linked. This paper explores the application of water throughout the healthcare setting – from source to sewer – and examine the multitude of uses where conservation interventions are both possible and necessary. Ranging from uses that require limited intervention to achieve reduced potable water demand such as the elimination of potable water for landscaping irrigation to those that require extensive technologies such as the on-site treatment of greywater and black water – potable water reduction is achievable through a broad range of strategies that any facility could adopt. Several recent healthcare case studies will demonstrate the applicability of these strategies. Finally, the paper introduces the relationship between water and embodied energy and reveals the necessity of a two fold strategy to promote these linked efficiencies.
This article originally appeared in Vol 01.01 of the Perkins+Will Research Journal. CLICK HERE to see the whole article.