AN innovative rainwater harvesting trial is being carried out at a new Argyll housing development by Scottish Water and Argyll Community Housing Association (ACHA).
12 new homes at the Barn Park development in Inveraray will take part in the trial. Six of the houses will be fitted with rainwater harvesting technology, and six will have normal water systems built to current standards so all 12 can be measured and compared.
The homes with the technology will use captured rainwater to flush toilets, hopefully reducing consumption in the house by between 20 and 30%. All the houses will have their water use recorded by way of a smart monitor which can store and send data without needing to be physically inspected.
The trial will run for three years to ensure sufficient comparative data is collected. The information will be shared with Building Standards to help their understanding of the potential benefits of the system.
Andy Wilson, Project Manager, Scottish Water, said, “This project is important because one of the key findings from our recent customer consultation was that Scots want to see their water charges remaining low. Producing water is energy and cost intensive, and with rising energy costs we are constantly looking for ways we can help or customers use less water without impacting on their quality of life.
“Although Scotland is awash with water, the production of drinking water that meets regulatory standards and ensures the on-going health of Scots is expensive. By investigating technologies that use rainwater in a smart way we are taking those first crucial steps to changing how we view our consumption and clever use of water. While the west coast of Scotland is not known for its lack of water, technology like this can help reduce our impact on the environment, maximise available resources and help keep customers costs down.”
Alastair MacGregor, Chief Executive, ACHA added, “The new build development at Inveraray will not only provide much needed homes but is being constructed to enhanced building warrant standards. ACHA is committed to helping promote vibrant, healthy and environmentally responsible and thriving communities. The partnership working with Scottish Water on this project meets with our aims of effective use of resources and sustainable development”.
The development of 12 homes for affordable rent is progressing well with completion planned for August 2015. The construction contract is being carried out by Stewart McNee Ltd., of Dunoon.