Evaluation of alternative water sources for commercial buildings: a case study in Brisbane, Australia
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Commercial buildings are central to cities and contribute significantly to the urban demand for natural resources, including freshwater. Green building benchmarking tools include more efficient water use as key indicator of sustainability. This paper explores options for substituting mains drinking water with an alternative, non-potable water source on a fit for purpose basis. The research findings are based on a monitoring study of a commercial building in Brisbane, Australia that is harvesting rainwater for meeting non-potable water demand. The results demonstrated that the system is only achieving moderate reliability in meeting demand due to operational problems. The case study analysis has highlighted the need to include validation and monitoring to ensure the system is operating as per design intent. The paper also investigates the potential of other local, non-potable water sources for high-rise commercial buildings, in particular air conditioning condensate and groundwater inflow to a basement wet well. The paper concludes by comparing the advantages and disadvantages of different local water sources which highlights the need to undertake a site specific investigation to identify a suitable alternative water source, which considers O&M complexity and the capacity of facilities management
Resources, Conservation & Recycling
© 2014 Elsevier B.V.. This is the author-manuscript version of this paper. Reproduced in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher. Please refer to the journal's website for access to the definitive, published version.
Water Resources Engineering