UAE | Environment

Plumbing codes to cut water wastage

Authorities have established a uniform plumbing code and drawn up guidelines for water supply and sanitation to reduce water wastage in Abu Dhabi.

  • By Rayeesa Absal, Staff Reporter
  • Published: 23:04 March 23, 2009
  • Gulf News

Abu Dhabi: Authorities have established a uniform plumbing code and drawn up guidelines for water supply and sanitation to reduce water wastage in Abu Dhabi.

The manual, published by the Environment Agency - Abu Dhabi (EAD), under the direction of the Executive Council, outlines measures to maximise efficiency in water consumption and cut wastage.

All new buildings and projects will have to comply with the regulations. The municipality is expected to begin enforcement within a few weeks.

"Water usage and wastage will be dramatically cut once the plumbing codes are enforced. We estimate a 25 to 30 per cent reduction in water usage. The current rate of water wastage is about 18 to 20 per cent. This will also become significantly less", Dr Mohammad Dawoud, Manager of the Natural Resources Policy Department at the EAD, told Gulf News.

For example, in old taps water flows out at a rate of 2.5 gallons per minute. The new regulations call for water flow to be limited to less than 1.5 gallons per minute. In public places, schools, hospitals, mosques, etc, the water flow will be less than one gallon per minute.

"There are huge numbers of buildings and developments coming up here so the codes will make a marked difference," Dawoud said, adding that no changes would be made on existing buildings.

"Wastage is mainly due to faulty networks. With the use of high-quality material in water distribution and sewage networks, as defined by the code, this wastage can be curbed", he said.

The per-capita water usage of UAE residents is one of the highest in the world at 550 litres per day. Last year, EAD announced that they planned to bring this number down to 350 litres per head per day over a period of five years.

In a statement, EAD said that the code it developed in partnership with various stakeholders is one of the most comprehensive and technologically advanced in the world.

"It addresses the needs of Abu Dhabi, while providing a sustainable process for future development", the statement said.

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