Local News

Kitty Hawk home known for being green

Posted March 24, 2008 8:08 p.m. EDT
Updated April 30, 2008 6:09 p.m. EDT

— Recent rain has done wonders for Triangle rivers and lakes. But the drought has some people finding ways to put to use the rain that falls at their homes.

Nestled in the trees of Kitty Hawk sits a truly "green" home.

“We've been here going on four years, and I think the sum total of city water we've used is somewhere in the neighborhood of 300 or 400 gallons," Nancy White said.

White doesn't have a well. She gets water from a cistern.

“Basically, what you got is a pump and pressure tank set-up, similar to a well system," Dennis Saver said.

The rain water is captured on the roof, drained into pipes and collected in two tanks.

White and Saver use the water for everything, including drinking, laundry and bathing.

"I'm just saying that we need to quit looking to surface ground water supplies to supply our needs. We're going to have to find other ways to do that,” White said.

"Putting cisterns in every house and having it be part of, if not all of, your water source – I think it is a component of green building we are going to have to consistently apply," White said.

White and Saver have been using rain water for a long time. About seven years ago when WRAL met them in Cary, they were one of the first to capture and use rain water for home irrigation.

“Why isn't everybody doing this? They should be doing this," Saver said.

White and Saver hope that soon, all new home construction will incorporate these conservation measures into their building plans.

“Yeah, we had to go through some hoops, but I think the technology is now such that anybody can design this into their house. It'll be seamless, and unless you knew it was there you wouldn't even know it, you'd just use it," White said.

Cisterns are not just popping up at homes. Wake County schools are installing them on some campuses and using the rainwater to flush toilets and irrigate.