EPA Guide Offers Workplace Water Best Management Practices

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Posted by Heidi Schwartzwatersense

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) WaterSense program has created WaterSense at Work: Best Management Practices for Commercial and Institutional Facilities—a compilation of best management practices to help commercial and institutional facilities better manage their water use through efficient practices and products.

Building owners and facility managers can significantly reduce their water use, energy requirements, and operating costs by understanding how to use water more efficiently in their facilities. America’s commercial and institutional facilities use 17% of the water provided by the nation’s public water supplies, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.

WaterSense at Work addresses water use in educational facilities, offices, restaurants, hotels, hospitals, laboratories, and other organizations. The online resource includes in-depth sections covering:

  • Water management planning
  • Water use monitoring and education
  • Sanitary fixtures and equipment
  • Commercial kitchen equipment
  • Outdoor water use
  • Mechanical systems
  • Laboratory and medical equipment
  • Onsite alternative water sources

According to McGraw-Hill Construction’s Water Use in Buildings SmartMarket Report (2009), business benefits of water efficiency include reduced water use (15%), decreased energy use (10% to 11%), and reduced operating costs (11% to 12%). WaterSense at Work presents numerous tactics for businesses and organizations to achieve water, energy, and operational savings, as well as case studies on different types of facilities that have achieved savings by using water efficiently.

WaterSense, a partnership program sponsored by EPA, has helped consumers save 287 billion gallons of water and more than $4.7 billion in water and energy bills. For more information, visit www.epa.gov/watersense.

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