Draft WaterSense New Homes Specification Released

On Thursday, May 22, the WaterSense program announced a draft specification for water-efficient single-family new homes that provides the criteria new homes will need to meet to be certified and labeled under the WaterSense program. The specification is designed to ensure not only sustainable, efficient water use but also a high level of user performance satisfaction.

"The WaterSense New Homes specification is family-friendly and climate-ready," said Assistant Administrator for Water Benjamin H. Grumbles. "Homeowners will save water, money, and energy, and communities will have an important new tool for sustainable growth and water efficiency. It's a great example of WaterSense and Energy Star joining forces to help homebuyers save and communities respond to climate change."

WaterSense-labeled new homes will combine WaterSense-labeled products with other water-efficient fixtures and practices to reduce the amount of water used by approximately 20 percent. The draft specification establishes criteria for water-efficient new homes. Homes must meet criteria in three areas: indoor water use, outdoor water use, and homeowner education. Third-party inspectors will certify that homes meet all of the required criteria. Homes meeting all the criteria will be given a WaterSense label.

EPA is inviting all interested parties to provide comments during the 60 day comment period which ends July 21, 2008. Please send any comments or suggestions regarding this draft specification to watersense-newhomes@erg.com. (Please note, all comments become part of the public record.)

EPA will also be conducting an online meeting on June 18, 2008 to discuss the draft specification. To register for the meeting, please fill out and submit the Water-Efficient Single-Family New Home Public Meeting Registration Form by June 10, 2008.

For more detailed information and to obtain a copy of the draft specification for water-efficient single-family new homes, please visit http://www.epa.gov/watersense/specs/homes.htm. If you have questions about the draft specification for water-efficient single-family new homes or joining WaterSense, please contact the WaterSense Helpline at (866) WTR-SENS (987-7367) or e-mail watersense@erg.com.

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