In celebration of World Plumbing Day, March 11, Plumbing Manufacturers International, members of which produce about 90% of the nation’s plumbing products, developed these 10 reasons why plumbing matters. Why does plumbing matter to you? Post your comments at www.safeplumbing.org/whyplumbingmatters.
1. Plumbing harnesses a precious resource — water — to use safely for health, hygiene and well-being. Plumbing makes possible the miracle of clean, convenient water — something often taken for granted.
2. Plumbing manufacturing innovations to gain water efficiency have dramatically reduced the amount of water used through toilets, showerheads, faucets and other plumbing products. For example, WaterSense-certified plumbing products meeting Environmental Protection Agency criteria have saved consumers 757 billion gal. of water and $14.2 billion in water and energy bills since 2006, according to the EPA.
3. To assure customer satisfaction, WaterSense products are certified to perform as well or better than standard models — all while saving at least 20% more water.
4. The increased use of water-efficient plumbing is an important, yet often overlooked, part of the water sustainability solution. The EPA estimates that the United States could save 3 trillion gal. of water and more than $17 billion dollars annually if every U.S. household converted to WaterSense-certified products. High-efficiency plumbing in commercial facilities can help save even more.
5. Modern plumbing products help regions affected by droughts and water shortages to use water more efficiently. For example, Denver reduced water use to a 40-year low in December 2014, according to the Denver Post. Contributing to the decrease was replacing 3,200 3.5 gal. per flush toilets in the Denver Public Schools with 1.25 gpf toilets. Denver has plans to replace 6,800 more by 2018.
6. Water efficiency contributes greatly to energy savings. Less water used means less water heated and less water transported. Installing WaterSense-labeled faucet aerators in bathrooms, for example, helps save water and energy.
7. Plumbing brings comfort and beauty into homes and lives. Kitchens and bathrooms not only serve functional purposes, they provide the refuge of comforting meals, soothing baths and restorative relaxation.
8. The plumbing industry is a strong economic engine, providing jobs and livelihoods to millions of people around the world.
9. The ability of plumbing and sanitation systems to deliver clean water and remove waste has protected populations from communicable disease throughout history. There is acknowledgement from many within the public health community that clean, drinkable water has likely protected more lives and extended life expectancy more than any medical advancement. Plumbing advancements continue to protect lives in developing nations.
10. A future of water sustainability is an achievable prospect, as plumbing manufacturers work with allies in safe plumbing and water efficiency to find solutions.