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Sand dams – A solution for dryland communities

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Sand dams are a simple, low cost and low maintenance, replicable rainwater harvesting technology. It’s a solution that focuses on community ownership and self supply that involves significant community contribution and locally supplied skills.

They provide a clean, local water supply for domestic and farming use and are suited to arid and semi-arid areas of the world.  A sand dam is a reinforced concrete wall (or a similarly robust and impermeable weir) typically built 1 – 5 metres high across a seasonal sand river. When it rains the dam captures soil laden water behind it – the sand in the water sinks to the bottom, whilst the silt remains suspended in the water.

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EDWARD C. LITTLE WATER RECYCLING FACILITY: Producing 5 Classes of Recycled Water In Response to Southern California’s Ongoing Drought & Growing Water Demand

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The Edward C. Little Water Recycling Facility (ELWRF), in operation since 1995 and one of the largest water recycling facilities worldwide, is an excellent reference site and the only facility in the United States producing 5 distinct types of recycled water.
The plant is internationally recognized as a water recycling leader, producing over 240,000 m3/d of high quality recycled water (final capacity 340,000 m3/d) from secondary wastewater effluent via several advanced treatment lines and satellite facilities for a wide variety of reuse applications, including landscape irrigation, industrial use and aquifer recharge.

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