RESNET Developing a Water Efficiency Rating Index Standard

Water is the new frontier for RESNET and HERS Raters. In many parts of the nation water is fast becoming an ever increasingly expensive commodity. There is clearly a need for a system to rate a home's efficiency in water use. This will allow homebuyers to know how efficiently water is being used in the homes they are considering to buy. It will also provide an opportunity for homebuilders to monetize the efficiency of their homes in the same fashion that the HERS Index plays for energy efficiency.

It is RESNET’s policy that the certification of individuals to conduct the ratings of homes and software modeling programs will not be restricted to the current RESNET infrastructure. Other certification and software accreditations will be recognized as long as they comply with the provisions of the standard.

RESNET is partnering with the International Code Council (ICC) to develop a national consensus standard for a Water Efficiency Rating Index (WER Index). The development of the national standard will be co-chaired by:

  • Jacob Atalla of KB Home
  • Ed Osann of the Natural Resources Defense Council
  • Jonah Schein of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s WaterSense program.

The following will be the process that will RESNET will follow in developing the WER Index Standard:

WER Index Advisory Council

The WER Index Advisory Council will oversee the development of the WER Index and will vet the drafts of subject matter experts before being submitted to the RESNET consensus public review and comment process. The membership of the advisory represents a wide diversity of interests and expertise in the fields of water efficiency and HERS ratings. The following organizations and companies are represented in the advisory council:

Water Efficiency

  • Southern Nevada Water Authority
  • Metropolitan Water District of Southern California
  • Southwest Florida Water Management District
  • Cobb County Water System
  • Colorado Springs Utilities
  • Irrigation Association
  • Water Quality Association
  • Alliance for Water Efficiency
  • Cascade Water Alliance
  • Western Resource Advocates
  • Florida Water Star
  • Gary Klein and Associates
  • Uponor
  • Kohler Co.
  • Whirlpool
  • Rinnai
  • RHEEM
  • Greyter Water Systems Inc.
  • TaylorMorrison
  • All Elements
  • Aquacraft
  • Nexus eWater
  • Weiland & Associates
  • Water Demand Management
  • bmla Landscape Architecture
  • Ryan Taylor Architects LLC

HERS Ratings

  • Florida Solar Energy Center
  • NORESCO
  • Santa Fe Community College
  • Energy Inspectors
  • FOX Energy Specialists
  • US-EcoLogic
  • Salt River Project
  • Environments for Living
  • JohnsManville
  • GreenFiber
  • Steve Easley & Associates
  • MASCO Home Services
  • ICF International
  • O'Brien & Company
  • Best Management Partners
  • Evolve Technologies LLC
  • Advanced Energy Efficiency
  • DwellGreen of Dallas
  • Energy Services, Inc.
  • Green Building Authority

Home Builders

  • KB Home
  • Meritage Homes
  • Santa Fe Area Home Builders Association

Codes and Standards

  • International Code Council
  • International Association of Plumbing and Mechanical Officials

To view the membership of the advisory council go to RESNET WER Index Advisory Council.

WER Index Working Group

The RESNET WER Index Working Group is responsible for the developing the draft WER Index Guidelines to be submitted to the RESNET consensus public review and comment process. Members are posted at RESNET WER Index Working Group

WER Index Working Group Technical Subcommittees

The subcommittees will be composed of technical experts. The subcommittees will be:

  • Modeling and development of reference home
  • Rating inspection and testing procedures
  • Rater training and qualification requirements
  • Indoor water appliances
  • Outdoor water use

Members are posted at RESNET WER Index Working Group Technical Subcommittees.

Process for Developing WER Index Standard

RESNET will adopt the following process for developing the WER Index Standard:

  • The appointment of a Standard Task Group that will serve as the standard technical committee. The committee will be composed of subject matter experts that represent a balance of expertise – raters – software – water indoor and outdoor appliances. The task group will draft the standard to be submitted to advisory council for vetting.
  • Formation of technical subcommittees to draft provisions of standard. The subcommittees will be composed of technical experts. The subcommittees will be:
    • Modeling and development of reference home
    • Rating inspection and testing procedures
    • Rater training and qualification requirements
    • Indoor water appliances
    • Outdoor water use

It is the goal to develop and adopt a RESNET interim standard by December 31, 2015. The interim standard then will serve as the basis for the ANSI standard.

Media Coverage of RESNET WER Index

Announcement of Launching of RESNET WER Index

On April 14, 2015 there was a joint release by RESNET, Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) and the EPA WaterSense Program on the launching the RESNET Water Efficiency Rating (WER) Index. The announcement was released by MarketWired. The release is posted at Release on WER Index.

News outs from Alaska to South Carolina carried the story. The listing of news outlets that MarketWired reported that carried the story is posted at Media Coverage of RESNET WER Index.

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