São Paulo creates system to save and recycle water
May 27, 2014
Brazil is well-known for its hot, intense summers with temperatures reaching 35° C (95° F) or higher each day. Some depend on air-conditioning units to keep cool. Walking down city sidewalks, it’s common to see water dripping from window AC units.
These units can be a source of recyclable water. The dripping water is condensed water vapor from the air inside the buildings, which specialists say is like rain water.
Based on an idea from Harold Modesto, Branch Manager - São Paulo, a drain-and-capture system was installed to collect the water from all 15 air conditioners in the warehouse for reuse. Technicians developed a pipe system that collects and then deposits the water into collection tanks installed below the stairwells. These tanks have been collecting almost one thousand liters of water each week.
São Paulo has been using the collected water to wash and clean the warehouse, bathrooms and toilets in the office, water the plants, wash the company trucks and more. This initiative has successfully reduced expenses paid to water and sump companies.
It is estimated that São Paulo will collect and recycle over fifty-thousand liters of water per year. In 2012, the São Paulo branch averaged 2.235 m3 per employee per month. With a move to a new facility in 2013, Haroldo noted “the result of eliminating over 115 m3 of water usage and costs per month by Crown São Paulo staff is a significant contribution to the environment for our industry.”