With buildings HVAC and refrigeration systems accounting for about a third of the water used in a typical office building, ASHRAE (the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air Conditioning Engineers) is doing something to try and cut down that consumption.
The association is developing a new standard to provide a baseline requirement for efficient water use. Standard 191P for the Efficient Use of Water in Building, Site and Mechanical Systems is open for public comment until December 10.
John Swift, chair of the committee writing the ASHRAE standard, points out: “Buildings consume 20% of the world’s available water, a resource that becomes scarcer each year."
There is currently no standard document that adequately and comprehensively addresses the issue of how to efficiently use water in the design, construction and operation of buildings, according to Swift.
The requirements in the standard would optimize the volume of water required to operate HVAC systems, plumbing systems and irrigation systems, but would not apply to storm water management. It covers systems such as evaporative heat rejection, humidification systems, thermal storage, ground source pump systems, water heating systems, laboratory facilities and residential appliances. It would not apply to storm water management.
To find out more information and comment on the proposed standard, click here.