Many people long to have swimming pools in their backyards. Whether it is for morning laps or to entertain guests and children in the summertime, backyard pools are a huge part of the American Dream. However, in more recent years people have also begun the consider the environmental impacts of their lifestyle choices, which includes swimming pools. So how can one achieve their dream of having a pool in their backyard, but also keep the environmental costs of it down? The answer is achieving that dream by building a green swimming pool, or a “natural pool”. Unsurprisingly, natural pools are fairly common in Europe- a continent with traditionally strong environmental regulations. However, they are starting to enjoy immense popularity in the United States.
Benefits of Natural Pools
Natural pools have a much smaller negative impact to the environment than traditional swimming pools. The abundance of chemicals used to keep traditional pools clean play a significant role in contributing to global warming, acid rain, and the depletion of the ozone layer. Natural pools are chemical free. Aside from the environmental benefits of natural pools, they are also less harmful for the human body, have lower maintenance costs, and are less work.
How to Build a Green Swimming Pool
Now that we know that natural pools are the way to go, let’s discuss the logistics of natural pools. How is building a green pool different to building a traditional swimming pool? Natural pools are cleaned in the same way that Mother Nature filters and purifies natural bodies of water. Instead of being disinfected with chemicals, they are a biologically active living system with microorganisms and plant life.
Take the following steps to build a green pool in your home:
- Create zones. Natural pools stay clean by having clearly defined swimming zones and constructed wetlands. The pool needs to be carved into the zones, with about half of it used for swimming and the other half used for regeneration and cleaning.
- Build an overflow channel. The overflow channel is important for collecting debris from the water.
- Build a filtration system. After the pool has been divided into zones, energy efficient pipes should be installed into the regeneration zones. These will be used to mechanically circulate the water to break down impurities in the water. This filtration system will keep the water in the swimming zones clean and safe to swim in.
- Add plants. Plant life is a critical part of keeping a natural pool clean. Each regeneration zone must be filled with specific aquatic plants that extract nutrients in the water. Water from the swimming zones will be pumped through the regeneration zones with the pipes from the filtration system. The biological filters made up of microorganisms, plants, and small wildlife included in the regeneration zones will purify the water before pumping it back into the swimming zones.
Whether you build your own natural swimming pool or get the help of a professional, with natural pools you get to enjoy owning a swimming pool in your backyard without the environmental costs. Green swimming pools are the future of American backyards!