Pitkin County adopted new regulations this week that allow residents to capture and reuse water from some kinds of indoor plumbing.
The county now allows for reuse of graywater, which is wastewater from laundry, showers and bathroom sinks. It does not include toilets, urinals or kitchen sinks.
In Colorado, it’s only legal to reuse graywater for outdoor irrigation and for indoor toilet flushing. The state health department says this can mean saving up to 28 gallons of water per person per day. But interested residents or businesses will need to jump through some hoops.
Anyone interested in using graywater to irrigate a lawn will have to show that they have the water right to do so. Kurt Dahl, from Pitkin County’s environmental health department, said the county will work with the Colorado Division of Water Resources to sort out any issues.
Any graywater used to flush indoor toilets will first need to be disinfected.
Dahl said Pitkin County is the second jurisdiction in the state to adopt graywater reuse regulations. Officials with the City of Aspen are researching the options.