EXPLORING ALTERNATIVE WATER SOURCES

Condensate from air conditioners is an abundant source of clean water that irrigators can turn to during the hot summer months when they need it most, according to a technical paper to be presented at the 25th International Irrigation Show.

“The quantity of water coming out of some of these systems is astounding,” said Karen Guz, a conservation planner for the San Antonio Water System. “There are a lot of humid regions of the country with water problems. It's free, unrestricted water for irrigation purposes.”

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Guz says one shopping mall in San Antonio collects 500 gallons of clean water an hour from air conditioner condensate to use in a cooling tower, but that water could also be diverted for irrigation. A city library collects condensate from its air conditioners and uses it to irrigate the landscape.

Air conditioner condensate and other alternative water sources like graywater and rooftop cisterns will be discussed in detail during presentations at the International Irrigation Show in Tampa, Fla.

Other landscape presentations will cover how and why to irrigate new synthetic turfs; a case study showing how climate-based controllers, meters and auditing allowed one school district to reduce water usage by 44 percent; the impact of water conservation programs on landscape water use; tips for using climate-based controller technology, and information to help evaluate new sprinkler technology.

Technical sessions for agriculture and landscape will be held daily during the show Nov. 14-16. A full slate of education courses and certification exams will be offered Nov. 11-16. For more information, visit www.irrigation.org.

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