Water Reduction Tactics in Chapman’s LEED Renovation

In the U.S., nearly 340 billion gallons of fresh water are withdrawn from our aquifers everyday, and more than half is discharged as sewage immediately after use. By far, toilet flushing generates the most waste water in residential and commercial buildings accounting for almost 5 billion gallons daily. In our Platinum LEED renovation, we will apply for CI credits 1.1 and 1.2; the intent of these credits is to maximize water efficiency within commercial spaces and to reduce the burden on municipal supply and wastewater systems by between 20 and 30 percent.

Offices similar to Chapman’s with roughly 30 employees will consume an average of 50,000 gallons per year. By installing new systems and fixtures, such as high-efficiency dual flush toilets (1.28 gal/average flush and .8 gal/light flush), waterless urinals, and replacing our current 2.5 gallons per minute faucets with proximity-activated faucets and low-flow 1.5 gal aerators, we believe that we can reduce that figure by more than 40 percent.

Chapman has chosen to partner with Kohler for all of our plumbing fixtures throughout our facility which includes five bathrooms and a kitchen. “Last year there was a huge push for [water-efficient products],” says Kohler Sales Executive Alison Stanley. “We’re responding to the customers’ interest and demand for these products.” Stanley, who has been with Kohler since the manufacturer began offering water-efficient products, is well-versed in plumbing technology. She reports that “Kohler has been on the forefront of water-efficiency, offering more water-saving products than any other manufacturer.”

It’s no mistake that Kohler would choose to partner with Chapman. “With such strong product knowledge and a large group of LEED APs on staff, Chapman is ahead of the pack. It’s clear that Chapman Construction/Design has a strong commitment to ecological building solutions; you’re not just looking to save money, you pay attention to the details. We knew you were the real deal,” says Alison.

The dual-flush toilet was first released three years ago but it had a slow initial acceptance because of the familiarity factor and learning curve. Waterless urinals are relatively new to the market using a bio-degradable vegetable base sealing liquid and needing only weekly maintenance. This redesigned generation of fixtures has seemingly been perfected and aesthetically they are right on the mark. “Kohler’s products save water without sacrificing performance or design,” says Alison. As we head into this exciting phase of our LEED renovation, we’re confident that these Kohler products will contribute considerably in reducing waste of potable water.

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