The Building Standards Commission and Department of Housing conducted a fourth workshop earlier this week as both agencies continue to refine draft building standards that will require recycled water infrastructure (purple pipe) in certain parts of the state starting July 1, 2018.  This is in response to the industry-supported legislation AB 2282 (Gatto) which mandated this agency action.

As specified in the legislation, the draft building standards make it crystal clear that the purple pipe will be required only in those areas that are already served by a water recycling facility or will be served in the very near future.  In addition, HCD and BSC have recently added language that would trigger application only if the service provider has, or will, provide service “to the building site”. This industry-supported language will help reduce the potential for installing infrastructure that will never be used.

While it seems clear the regulations will deal with the use of recycled water for landscape irrigation purposes, it is less clear if the first set of mandatory provisions will bring the dual piping requirement indoors for use in toilets and urinals.  Plumbing fixture manufacturers and health agencies are raising health and safety concerns over the indoor use of recycled water.  If BSC and HCD are unable to satisfactorily resolve these issues within the next 3-4 months, it is highly likely that indoor mandate for dual piping will be put off for at least another 18 months.

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