Drip irrigation to the rescue
Regulation has a critical role to play in the ability to reuse wastewater. In countries that use reclaimed water in agriculture such as Israel, Chile, and Mexico, the guidelines limit the use of reclaimed water through sprinkler, spray, flood, and furrow since there is a danger of exposing the crops to human pathogens. This is especially true with regards to food crops.
Drip irrigation speaks directly to the issues of safe wastewater effluent dispersal and offers four key advantages over conventional dispersal methods:
- It minimizes health risks associated with exposure to reclaimed water since drip applies water in a precise location and reduces the risk of having direct contact between the crop and the treated wastewater.
- It minimizes liability exposure associated with overspray and drifts from conventional sprinkler systems especially near residential properties.
- It eliminates leaching, thereby minimizing potential groundwater degradation and/or near seashore pollution.
- It eliminates runoff, ponding, and odor problems.
Wastewater contains high concentrations of dissolved solids which in some cases might create a risk of clogging or partial clogging of the drip system. The good news is that there’s a solution for this. There’s a wide range of filters that can protect drip irrigation systems effectively from heavily contaminated water. Such filters can capture all large particles that might affect the uniformity of irrigation and clean them out from the system effectively. In the race to find solutions for the usage of reclaimed water, Netafim, and the global irrigation industry have developed through the years highly efficient filters and varied technologies that can ensure that the wastewater that flows through the drip system will not clog it.