NSF publishes commercial/residential water-reuse standard

The first US national standard for commercial and residential onsite water-reuse treatment systems was published on 15 November 2011 by NSF International, the US-based public health and environmental organization.

NSF/ANSI Standard 350: Onsite Residential and Commercial Water Reuse Treatment Systems sets guidelines for water reuse treatment systems with a key focus on public health and appropriate water quality criteria for reuse applications.

The standard aims to improve awareness and acceptance of onsite water reuse technologies, which can help countries concerned with increasing water scarcity and costs, and aging infrastructure of water distribution systems.

Certifying a water reuse system to NSF/ANSI 350 also satisfies requirements for leading green building programs. The US Green Building Council has included reference to NSF/ANSI 350 in its LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Building Design & Construction 2012 Draft Standard.

NSF developed this standard to ensure the systems properly treat graywater (ie, wastewater generated from activities such as laundry and bathing) and combined wastewater (ie, all sources of wastewater generated within a residence or building) for reuse in non-potable applications.

NSF/ANSI 350 establishes materials, design and construction, and performance requirements for onsite residential and commercial water reuse treatment systems and sets water quality requirements for the reduction of chemical and microbiological contaminants for non-potable water use. 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.

As already reported by D&WR, US-based Bio-Microbics Inc, a manufacturer of clean technologies, has become the first company to earn NSF/ANSI 350 certification for its Bio-Barrier® membrane bioreactor (MBR).

“Certification to NSF/ANSI 350 positions onsite 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,” said 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.”