New Codes, Green Building Rating Systems Influence Restroom Equipment Selection
How have new, more stringent water efficiency codes and green building rating systems influenced the selection of restroom equipment?
Plumbing and energy codes, standards, and rating systems are changing rapidly. Both major plumbing codes have developed new "green code" language to promote water efficiency and these are being updated. Many states are passing new legislation and Washington is working on tighter national standards. Over thirty bills were introduced in the last session of Congress containing new water efficiency language and more are certain to come. Green rating systems such as the US Green Building Council's LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) have a totally new way of rating facilities in the new draft of LEED 2012. The latest version of LEED was released for review in August. It can be viewed here
. Not only are irrigation and plumbing fixture requirement tightened, but cooling towers and water using appliances, equipment and water treatment equipment are now considered.
These codes, standards, and regulations impact all areas of water use including plumbing fixtures, landscape irrigation, and water using equipment ranging from medical and food service equipment to water reuse. Some of the more innovative code changes allow for on-site reuse of rainwater, air conditioning condensate, gray water, etc. for the first time. In other words, regulation is becoming more stringent on water use and at the same time allowing for more innovative solutions.
The bottom line is twofold: The first is that much more efficient equipment is available; and the second is that if your facility makes any modifications, new more efficient fixtures, equipment and appliances may be required.