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Where does our household water go after we are done with it?

Water leaving our homes generally goes either into a septic tank in the back yard where it evaporates or seeps back into the ground, or is sent to a sewage-treatment plant through a sewer system. In 1995, about 26 percent of the water coming from our homes was 'consumptively used.' That is, it was evaporated or transpired from yards. The other 74 percent was discharged to septic tanks or sewage-treatment plants, where it was cleaned and sent into streams, or sometimes reused for other purposes, such as watering golf courses and parks.

Tags: Hydrology, Pollution, Ecosystems, Groundwater, Water, Health, Ecology, Measurement, Streams, Quality, Chemistry