printech, February, 2004
Checklist: Water Efficiency Self-assessment


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From: Gary Jones (gjonesprinting@aol.com )
Date: Thu, 5 Feb 2004 12:31:04


FYI - From Water and Wastewater Products eNews at http://www.wwp-online.com

Checklist: Water efficiency self-assessment

Is your facility taking full advantage of water efficiency opportunities? Facility managers can use this checklist courtesy of the North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources to help gauge present water efficiency performance.

Top management commitment and resources

• Is water efficiency included in the company's environmental policy statement?
• Are water efficiency responsibilities delegated?
• Are quantitative goals established and tracked?
• How are water efficiency goals communicated to employees?
• What incentives and feedback loops exist for employee participation, suggestions and increased awareness?
• Has your facility taken advantage of available help and resources from your utilities, assistance programs, vendors or consultants?

Water efficiency survey
• Do you know the actual breakdown of your water uses: cooling and heating, domestic uses, process rinsing, cleaning activities, kitchens, laundries, landscaping, water treatment regeneration, evaporation, leaks and others?
• Do you know your life cycle water costs for supply water, heat and mechanical energy losses, wastewater treatment and sewer/discharge?
• Are you doing simple things such as leak inspections, eliminating unnecessary uses and using timers? Are these practices institutionalized?

Identifying opportunities -- Target areas for water reduction

Domestic
• Are code-conforming 1.6 gallons-per-flush commodes, 0.5-1.0 gallons-per-minute faucet aerators and low-flow 2.5 gpm showerheads in use?

Heating/Cooling
• Has once-through cooling water used in air conditioners, air compressors, vacuum pumps, etc., been eliminated with the use of chillers, cooling towers or air-cooled equipment?
• Has blow-down/bleed-off control on boilers and cooling towers been optimized?
• Is condensate being reused?

Landscaping
• Are low-flow sprinklers, trickle/drip irrigation, optimized watering schedules and water placement, preventative maintenance and xeriscaping techniques in place?

Kitchens
• Are "electric eye" sensors for conveyer dishwashers installed?
• Have new water- and energy-efficient dishwashers been examined?

Process rinsing and cleaning
• Have you considered improved rinsing techniques such as counter-current systems, sequential use from high-quality to lower-quality needs, conductivity flow controls, improved spray nozzles/pressure rinsing, fog rinsing or agitated rinsing?
• When not in use, is water cut off by flow timers, limit switches or manually?
• Is the life of an aqueous bath being maximized via filtration and maintenance control?
• Are "dry cleanup" practices used instead of hosing down, and first-pass pre-cleaning conducted with squeegees, brushes or brooms?

On-site water reuse
• Is water quality matched with water quantity?
• Have reuse applications been examined for process water, landscaping irrigation, ornamental ponds, flush water and cooling towers?

Water efficiency action plan
• Have you performed a cost analysis on water efficiency opportunities?
• Do you have a prioritized implementation schedule?
• Are water users informed of the changes and communication channels open for feedback?

Tracking and communicating results
• Do you post monthly water usage rates to employees and management?
• Are your water efficiency achievements being recognized in case study articles, media coverage, mentoring to other businesses, business environmental exchange programs or award programs?



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