FWDs don't waste water
Research suggests that food waste disposers (FWDs) only use an additional 6 litres of water per day – LESS THAN ONE EXTRA TOILET FLUSH
Whereas a running tap uses 6 litres of water a minute, a shower can use anywhere between 9 – 45 litres per minute, a hosepipe uses as much as 1000 litres per hour.
FWD = 6 litres per day
Running tap = 6 litres per minute
Shower = 9-45 litres per minute
Hosepipe = 1,000 litres per hour
Water saving tip
Fixing a dripping tap can save as much as 5000 litres a year – if everyone in the UK fixed their dripping taps we would save enough water to supply 120,000 people for one day.
FWDs are kind to sewers
Food waste disposers (FWDs) work in harmony with sewerage systems. All sewers are designed to carry waterborne waste from the home. Ground food waste produced by FWDs is over 70% water and is similar in physical composition to other black water which can be easily be transported through any existing sewer system. In fact, using the existing sewerage system avoids any need for additional refuse collection vehicles that would increase traffic congestion, fossil fuel consumption and vehicle emissions. FWD output also enriches the sewage sludge and according to recent research increases its energy recapture potential in the form of extra biogas produced. Researchers across the globe agree that they don’t harm the sewer system -the output of FWDs flows easily through the sewers, does not settle and does not contribute to fat, oil and grease (FOG) in the sewers.
The UK has one of the most comprehensive water and drainage networks in the world with around 98% of people connected to a sewer system. UK wastewater management systems recover the water so that it is safe to return to rivers, seas, etc. and the organic matter and nutrients from the wastewater are treated to produce renewable energy and nutrient-rich soil improver. This soil improver is used to feed soils and crops. The UK water industry has been, and continues to increase its production of renewable energy.
The London sewer system was, and still is, considered a pioneering piece of engineering. It was executed by Joseph Bazalgette who completed the massive works in the late 19th Century, to intercept the drains and divert waste water into pipes that carried it away to be treated and discharged at a safe distance downstream of the city. Prior to this in the 1830s only half of the babies born in Europe lived to the age of 5, the other half died of diarrhea, dysentery, typhoid and cholera because sewage contaminated their drinking water. The sanitary drainage from houses was either thrown into the streets or collected in cesspools. Some of today's sewerage infrastructure dates from the Victorian times and is a tribute to the construction and engineering skills of those who built it.
Victorian sewers across the globe
It must be noted that other cities around the world have sewerage systems that are just as old as our Victorian system. 19th Century engineer William Lindley designed sewers across Europe which still survive today. He designed them for cities in Germany and elsewhere, including St. Petersburg, Budapest, Prague and Moscow.
Sewerage networks in Australian cities, including Sydney were also developed in the mid-nineteenth century. Australian homes (20%) have been using food waste disposers for the past few decades where these convenient appliances have been using the existing sewerage networks without any problems. A 2000 comparative study conducted in Sydney found that FWDs are a good environmental option for food waste.