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NSF International


NSF Publishes First U.S National Standard for Water Reuse Systems

NSF/ANSI 350 establishes criteria to improve awareness and acceptance of water reuse technologies

Published: Wednesday, November 23, 2011 - 15:33

(NSF: Ann Arbor, MI) -- NSF International, a global public health and environmental organization, has published the first American national standard for commercial and residential on-site water reuse treatment systems: NSF/ANSI 350—“Onsite residential and commercial reuse treatment systems.” The new standard complements NSF’s expanding scope of environmental standards and sustainable product standards, which help establish criteria for, and clear methods of, evaluating environmental and sustainable product claims.

NSF/ANSI 350 establishes criteria to improve awareness and acceptance of water reuse technologies that reduce impacts on the environment, municipal water and wastewater treatment facilities, and energy costs. According to the American Water Works Association, 84 percent of residential water is used in nondrinking (i.e., nonpotable) water applications such as lawn irrigation, laundry, and toilet flushing. Residential and commercial builders, architects, and regulators are turning to on-site wastewater reuse systems as a solution to water scarcity and energy costs associated with the treatment and distribution of municipal water and wastewater.

Certifying a water reuse system to NSF/ANSI 350 also satisfies requirements for leading green building programs. The U.S. Green Building Council has included reference to NSF/ANSI 350 in its Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Building Design and Construction 2012 draft standard. Products certified to NSF/ANSI 350 also could satisfy gray water use strategies under the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) National Green Building Certification program as an innovative practice.

NSF developed this U.S. national standard for evaluating onsite water reuse technologies to ensure the systems properly treat gray water (i.e., wastewater generated from activities such as laundry and bathing) and combined wastewater (i.e., all sources of wastewater generated within a residence or building) for reuse in nonpotable applications. NSF/ANSI 350 establishes materials, design and construction, and performance requirements for on-site residential and commercial water reuse treatment systems and sets water quality requirements for the reduction of chemical and microbiological contaminants for nonpotable water use. Treated wastewater (i.e., treated effluent) can be used for restricted indoor water use, such as toilet and urinal flushing, and outdoor unrestricted water use, such as lawn irrigation.

Shawnee, Kansas-based Bio-Microbics Inc., a manufacturer of clean technologies, is the first company to earn NSF/ANSI 350 certification for its Bio-Barrier membrane bioreactor (MBR). NSF scientists conducted an evaluation spanning more than six months of continuous operation of the Bio-Microbics Bio-Barrier MBR treatment system at one of NSF’s approved wastewater testing facilities.

“Certification to NSF/ANSI 350 positions on-site water reuse technologies as a viable solution to increasingly overburdened water and wastewater treatment facilities, water scarcity, and increasing costs associated with energy and water use,” says Tom Bruursema, general manager of NSF Sustainability. “Innovative clean technology manufacturers, such as Bio-Microbics, can now demonstrate the acceptability and effectiveness of their products, helping these technologies to be adopted more quickly into the marketplace.”

“Bio-Microbics is proud to be the first to earn certification against the new NSF water reuse treatment standard, which provides a sustainability benchmark to certify water reuse products,” says Bob Rebori, president of Bio-Microbics. “With green building and sustainable products becoming the focus of regulators, commercial and residential builders, and consumers, this new standard provides the water reuse industry with a way to meet the needs of their customers and set their products apart from those with unsubstantiated environmental claims.”

To learn more about NSF/ANSI Standard 350, contact Tom Bruursema at nsf350@nsf.org, or visit nsf.org/info/nsf350. Click here to purchase a copy of the standard.


About The Author

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NSF International

Manufacturers, regulators, and consumers look to NSF International for the development of public health standards and certification programs that help protect the world’s food, water, consumer products and environment. NSF’s mission is to protect and improve global human health. As an independent, accredited organization, its standards group facilitates the development of standards, and its service groups test and certify products and systems. NSF also provide auditing and risk management solutions for public health and the environment.