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Water 2017, 9(7), 516; https://doi.org/10.3390/w9070516

End-User Cost-Benefit Prioritization for Selecting Rainwater Harvesting and Greywater Reuse in Social Housing

1
Grupo de Investigación en Recursos Hídricos y Saneamiento Ambiental (GPH), Escuela de Ingeniería Civil, Facultad de Ingenierías Físico-Mecánicas, Universidad Industrial de Santander, Carrera 27 Calle 9, Bucaramanga 680002, Colombia
2
Centre for Water Systems, College of Engineering, Physical Sciences and Mathematics, University of Exeter, Kay Building, North Park Road, Exeter EX4 4QF, UK
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 26 May 2017 / Revised: 1 July 2017 / Accepted: 6 July 2017 / Published: 12 July 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Development of Alternative Water Sources in the Urban Sector)
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Abstract

Rainwater harvesting (RWH) and greywater reuse (GWR) are increasingly being considered at the building-level to achieve multiple goals. Cost-benefit assessments facilitate decision-making; however, most are focused on large-scale systems with limited information available for households from developing countries. To better understand the prioritization of costs and benefits by potential end-users in this context, this paper presents an assessment of an RWH/GWR system in low income, low consumption households in a social housing development in Colombia. From an initial household consultation, preferences related to the use of RWH/GWR were identified and three alternatives were proposed and designed. In a follow-up consultation, potential end-users were engaged with the cost-benefit of the proposed alternatives. Potential end-users prioritized the selection of the system with potable water savings of 25%, a payback period of 30 years, an internal return rate of 4.7%, and a Benefit/Cost ratio of 1.3. Of the three alternatives, this system had the median payback period, highest investment, and highest maintenance cost, but also the highest volumetric water saving and highest water and sewerage bill savings. In contrast to findings from developed countries, this indicates that minimising the cost may not be the primary decision making criteria in some developing country contexts, where perhaps a greater value is placed on conserving water resources. View Full-Text
Keywords: financial feasibility; greywater; prioritization; rainwater; social housing financial feasibility; greywater; prioritization; rainwater; social housing
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).
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Domínguez, I.; Ward, S.; Mendoza, J.G.; Rincón, C.I.; Oviedo-Ocaña, E.R. End-User Cost-Benefit Prioritization for Selecting Rainwater Harvesting and Greywater Reuse in Social Housing. Water 2017, 9, 516.

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