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DOE Waives Preemption of Plumbing Fixtures

The U.S Department of Energy (DOE) has waived the general rule of Federal preemption for energy conservation standards under 42 U.S.C. 6297(c) with respect to any State regulation concerning the water use or water efficiency of faucets, showerheads, water closets and urinals. The waiver allows states to set higher efficiency standards for these products than the current Federal regulations.

The Federal Register stated:

The provisions in 42 U.S.C. 6295(j)(3)(C) and 6295(k)(3)(C) represent a choice by Congress to deviate from the general rule of Federal preemption, where the relevant industry consensus body has failed to act to improve water efficiency for a significant period of time. ASME/ANSI last made a substantive amendment to its standards regarding the water efficiency requirements for showerheads and faucets on May 29, 1996 (ASME/ANSI A112.18.1M-1996), and for water closets and urinals on April 19, 1996 (ASME/ANSI A112.19.6-1995). Both of these standards were incorporated by reference into the Code of Federal Regulations in a final rule issued by DOE on March 18, 1998. 63 FR 13308. Because more than five years have passed since ASME/ANSI last amended the water efficiency requirements in either of these standards, DOE must issue this final rule waiving the provisions of 42 U.S.C. 6297(c) with respect to any State regulation concerning the water use or water efficiency of a particular type or class of showerhead, faucet, water closet or urinal that is both more stringent than the relevant Federal regulation and is applicable to any sale or installation or all products in that particular type or class.

The ruling became effective December 22, 2010.

The complete announcement can be viewed at: http://www.federalregister.gov/articles/2010/12/22/2010-32116/energy-efficiency-program-for-consumer-products-waiver-of-federal-preemption-of-state-regulations

 



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