Municipality urges stricter water use ildings

Dubai Municipality is calling on consultants and contractors to consider the rationalised use of water when designing and constructing buildings for the city.

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By  Alison Luke Published  September 23, 2006

Dubai Municipality is calling on consultants and contractors to consider the rationalised use of water when designing and constructing buildings for the city. The Municipality has issued a circular to firms in the professions asking that plumbing devices and materials be selected to minimise the consumption of water within buildings. The initiative follows a growth in water consumption that has led to relatively higher levels than exist in other Gulf cities. Consultants have been urged to specify low water-usage plumbing during the design phase of building projects in a bid to reduce water consumption across the city. “The rational use of water is an important step we have to take for the benefit of future generations,” commented Khaled Mohammed Saleh, director of the building department at Dubai Municipality. “Our own lives depend heavily on how much water we save for the future. The idea here is to design and implement new buildings that help save as much water as possible,” he added. The Municipality has said that it will take responsibility for ensuring that standards and specifications are met during both the licensing and construction stages of projects. This move has been welcomed by consultants. “Any efforts to reduce water consumption is welcome, and this is a step in the right direction. There are a number of things that can be designed and installed which will consume less water than traditional installations,” said Jeff Willis, principal, Arup. Willis warned that a rigid system will have to be implemented in order to ensure that the most efficient equipment is actually installed. “There could be an additional cost related to some of these [specifications], so the whole process needs to be enforceable and enforced to ensure they are carried through to the end of the project,” he stated. Statistics from the Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) report that during 2004 the total water consumption in the city equalled 243.2 million m3. Although water production has risen over the past six years, there is an increasing demand for desalinated water due to the increase in construction and population.

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