Washington, D.C. — U.S. Sen. Tom Udall (D-NM) has introduced four new pieces of legislation addressing water and energy efficiency, including S. 2226, “The WaterSense Efficiency, Conservation, and Adaptation Act of 2014,” and S. 2227, “The Water Efficiency Improvement Act of 2014,” the latter mirroring H.R. 4117 introduced in the House in February.
S. 2226 would amend the IRS Tax Code to provide a 30-percent tax credit (up to $2,000 per taxpayer) on the purchase of products “tested by an American National Standards Institute (ANSI) accredited third-party certification body or laboratory in accordance with the Environmental Protection Agency’s WaterSense program.”
S. 2227 seeks to improve U.S. water use efficiency and promote smart water systems to help communities and families across the nation make significant progress in conserving water and reducing costs. The amendment is designed to promote residential water efficiency through state rebate and incentive programs, and help water systems adapt to and mitigate the effects of climate change on the water cycle. It authorizes the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) WaterSense program, which is the water conservation corollary to Energy Star. WaterSense would receive adequate funding to improve and expand its labeling system for water efficient appliances, plumbing fixtures, landscaping and new homes.
“I welcome the International Association of Plumbing and Mechanical Officials’ support for my legislation to improve water efficiency and promote smart water systems, and I appreciate IAPMO’s hard work to certify water efficient products,” Udall said. “The measures in these proposals will provide tax credits and incentives to help more residences convert to using water efficient products without compromising product performance. Over time, this will not only conserve water, but will help taxpayers save money.”
IAPMO R&T has been an ANSI-accredited, EPA-licensed provider of WaterSense certification since 2007 and certified the first high-efficiency toilet (HET) to the standard in April of that year. To date, IAPMO R&T has certified thousands of such water-efficient products to the WaterSense specifications. Products bearing the WaterSense label must not only save water, but also perform as well or better than conventional models on the market.
“The IAPMO Group is very excited to see our representatives in Washington, D.C., taking such a proactive approach to protecting our vital natural resource of water and ensuring the plumbing industry remains an important contributor to these efforts,” said IAPMO CEO GP Russ Chaney.
Two other bills introduced by Udall and supported by IAPMO are S. 2225, “The Smart Water Resource Management Conservation and Efficiency Act of 2014,” which would create federally supported pilot projects that reduce the financial risks that inhibit water utility innovation to save energy, and S. 2228, “The Community Water Enhancement Act of 2014,” which would provide grants for rural communities seeking alternative water sources and more efficient use of current supplies.