Pressures on urban, peri-urban and rural water and agricultural systems are increasingly complex with multiple interacting stresses and impacts. As a way of addressing these issues there has been increasing consideration as to how to build and manage resilience in these complex social-ecological systems. This paper presents a case study of the role of water recycling for agricultural use within the context of the peri-urban water cycle in Western Sydney, Australia. Building upon a description of the water cycle associated with water reclaimed from urban wastewater and stormwater harvesting; aspects which enhance resilience are identified and discussed. These include water resource security, avoidance of wastewater discharges to receiving waters, enhanced processes of landscape ecology, provision of ecosystem services, environmental risk management, local agricultural products and services, social values, livelihood opportunity, and the industrial ecology of recycled organics.
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