The following is an excerpt from a letter from the American Supply Association and other organizations urging President Obama to include plumbing and irrigation efficiency retrofits and incentives for WaterSense products in a new jobs bill.

The following is an excerpt from a letter from the American Supply Association, along with BOMA International, U.S. Green Building Council, National Apartment Association, National Multi Housing Council and The Real Estate Roundtable, urging President Obama to include plumbing and irrigation efficiency retrofits and incentives for WaterSense products in a new jobs bill that is meant to create more green opportunities and boost the economy.
(Click on the link below to read the full letter in pdf form.)


Dear President Obama:

The undersigned companies and organizations – representing a broad cross-section of plumbing and irrigation contractors, equipment manufacturers and wholesalers, retailers, utilities, environmental groups, and real estate organizations – urge you to propose to Congress the inclusion of plumbing and irrigation efficiency retrofits in legislation to create green jobs and boost the economy.  Not only will water-efficient retrofits create near-term jobs in the plumbing industry, but installation of WaterSense products will save consumers money, save billions of gallons of water, reduce energy consumption, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. A jobs bill should also include federal procurement of WaterSense products for new buildings and major renovations. 

The Environmental Protection Agency’s WaterSense program promotes water efficiency among consumers. Incentives for the purchase of WaterSense products and services can be deployed quickly to build consumer demand for WaterSense technology and create and retain jobs. The WaterSense label certifies that a product will save water and perform well, backed by third-party testing and independent certification to ensure that the product meets EPA’s criteria for efficiency and performance.

WaterSense standards have been finalized for toilets, faucets, urinals, and irrigation professionals. Standards will be in place shortly for showerheads and weather-based irrigation controllers. As of December 2009, the WaterSense program included:
  • More than 300 WaterSense labeled toilet models
  • More than 800 WaterSense labeled faucet and faucet accessory models
  • More than 700 irrigation partners certified in deploying water-efficient landscaping techniques.

Incentives for WaterSense Create Jobs:  WaterSense incentives will spur hiring by manufacturers that produce the products, wholesalers and retailers who sell the products and the local contractors and construction workers who install these plumbing and irrigation products.  Federal procurement will offer a guaranteed market for WaterSense products, and will reduce taxpayer dollars spent on water and energy consumption in federal buildings.
  • The jobs potential for investment in replacing plumbing fixtures is on the order of 18 jobs per million dollars of direct investment.   For example, a $1 billion investment in WaterSense incentives has the potential to boost employment by 18,000 jobs and the U.S. GDP by $1.47 billion.
  • Employment in construction-related jobs, including plumbing, fell to 7.2 million in 2008 from 8 million in 2006, and the trend has not improved.   WaterSense incentives will help reverse this trend.
  • In just the wholesale-distribution sector of the plumbing industry, WaterSense incentives will create or retain 2,500 jobs for every $1 billion invested.

Incentives for WaterSense Create Jobs Immediately:  Incentives for WaterSense products will provide an immediate boost to the economy.
  • The supply chain in the plumbing industry is poised to respond almost immediately to the increased consumer demand for WaterSense products.  Little lead time is needed to create the necessary jobs to respond to the demand.
  • Homeowners will take advantage of WaterSense incentives, just as they have done in 2009 in response to incentives for energy efficient products, such as window replacements.
  • Retrofitting WaterSense plumbing fixtures or irrigation systems in commercial buildings can be done over the short-term compared to more expensive whole building or building-systems energy retrofits.
  • A workforce of landscape professionals to install native plants, rock gardens, and other water-efficient vegetation designs can be mobilized over a shorter term.

Click on the link below to read the full letter in pdf form.

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