What are those purple pipes around your community?


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Have you noticed those light purple pipes all over Brevard County? They carry reclaimed water, also called reuse water, that comes from wastewater treatment plants.

After the sewage is treated, there’s leftover water that is high in nutrients that can be used for watering lawns, golf courses and commercial air conditioning systems.

Many neighborhoods in Viera have reclaimed water as their irrigation source.

Reclaimed water should never be used as drinking water, to fill swimming pools or to wash vehicles.

  It should not be directly applied to the surfaces of vegetables or other edible crops that are not peeled or cooked before being consumed. Reclaimed water might have higher levels of pathogens such as bacteria and viruses that don’t get filtered out — so it isn’t considered safe to drink or swim in.

Putting a lot of this water directly into waterways and the Lagoon only recycles a problem. Be stingy with the use of water from the purple pipe. It has the power of many fertilizers, so there’s rarely a need to use both fertilizer and reclaimed water.

Brevard County bans all use of fertilizer with nitrogen or phosphorus from June 1 to September 30. During the summer rainy season, fertilizer on grass, turf and lawns washes into streets and drains, making its way to the Indian River Lagoon and other waterways. The nutrients in fertilizer (nitrogen and phosphorus) are what cause algae blooms and poor water quality.  Major algae blooms block the sun, which can cause the death of seagrass, plants, fish and other animals.

When mowing a lawn, be sure to blow or leave the grass and lawn clippings in the yard. When clippings blow into the street from a driveway or other cement areas, they often end up in storm drains and water bodies. Other nutrient sources include pet waste, pesticides and herbicides, and soaps used to wash cars.

Be smart, be safe and Help the Lagoon.

For more information, go to HelpTheLagoon.org or Facebook.com/BIRLC.