Plumbing Industry Supports Legislation That Will Improve Water Quality and Efficiency

WASHINGTON DC – The IAPMO Group and Plumbing Manufacturers International (PMI) commend the House Science, Space and Technology Committee for advancing legislation last week, re-authorizing the National Institute of Standards and Technology and calling for the creation of a research agenda in plumbing on site.

During the bill’s markup by the July 27 committee, U.S. Representative Paul Tonko (DN.Y.) was successful in proposing a significant amendment to HR 4609, the National Institute of Standards and Technology for the Future Act of 2021, which authorizes funding to NIST to conduct practical water-related research on systems in homes and buildings, addressing critical issues such as water quality, efficiency, reuse, sustainability and resilience.

A new program at NIST will help fight a 900% increase in Legionnaires’ disease since 2000. Major issues, ”said Dave Viola, CEO of IAPMO. “We commend Representative Tonko and the rest of the committee for recognizing this need and including it in this important piece of legislation. It will have a direct and positive impact on American homes and buildings today and for the foreseeable future. “

Over the years, IAPMO and PMI have worked with Congress and NIST to meet and prioritize plumbing research needs. Representative Tonko’s amendment is based on legislation developed by Representative Matt Cartwright (D-PA) and Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL), both of whom have already introduced legislation to expand NIST’s efforts on the potable water. In May 2020, NIST released a report that identified nearly 60 specific research needs and challenges facing the plumbing industry. This report provides a useful roadmap for meeting these needs through applied research and activities related to codes and standards.

Kerry Stackpole, CEO of PMI, said “American consumers benefit from state-of-the-art plumbing fittings and accessories; However, the traditional plumbing that carries water to these fixtures in our homes and offices is based on research and data from the 1930s. “Stackpole noted that” research and data updated by NIST, in collaboration with academia, industry and other key stakeholders, would dramatically improve the efficiency and safety of water in water systems across the country. ”

Another important issue that will be addressed by NIST research is the sizing of plumbing systems in buildings. Much has changed in the way Americans use water since the 1920s and 1930s, when Dr. Roy Hunter, working for the National Bureau of Standards, NIST’s predecessor, developed the method for predicting water demands. use of water in a building and determine how large systems need to be to meet those demands. Although minor updates have been made to these methods over the years, they are still used today in plumbing codes despite the many improvements and efficiencies brought to plumbing fixtures, appliances and others. equipment using water in subsequent years. As a result, it is widely recognized that today’s plumbing systems are often oversized, resulting in increased construction costs, wasted water and energy, and lowered water quality. . Research will seek to resolve this problem and lead to a method of determining the sizes of plumbing system that are most appropriate for the particular building.