New Greywater Standards For California
Written by Geoff Jones   
Wednesday, 26 August 2009 15:21

Earlier this month California, often known for leading the way in pioneering legislative change to help protect the environment, released new updated greywater standards.  I thought it would be worthwhile to give you a quick update on what has happened in California as more and more states and provinces are looking at each other to see what to do as we realize more and more each day the importance of water conservation and re-use and the need to make changes.

The California Building Standards Commission’s new greywater standards went into effect on Tuesday Aug 4, 2009.  Dozens of people crowded into the Faulkner Gallery at the Santa Barbara Public Library to learn about the new standards and participate in a city-sponsored workshop led by Art Ludwig, a resident of Santa Barbara and a well known greywater expert.

Tuesday, or “California greywater liberation day,” as Ludwig calls it, came about as a result of many years of work and promotion by greywater systems advocates. Ludwig himself worked with the city of Santa Barbara as an expert in the field of greywater reuse and spoke at the Building Standards Commission meeting that passed the changes to the greywater standards in California.

So what actually changed and what does this mean for greywater re-use in California?  Well, it is now legal for Californians to install simple laundry and single-fixture systems allowing them to use greywater for irrigation without a permit. Licensed professionals can also install systems for homeowners instead of homeowners attempting to install a system themselves to get around the standards.

The new standards don’t make graywater systems “open season,” to anything anyone wants to do, however, they certainly open up options that previously would not have been possible for wider adoption and reuse of greywater.  It really is a great step in the right direction.


Last Updated on Wednesday, 26 August 2009 15:27