Home / News / World /  Donald Trump orders toilet rule review, says people flush 10 times

Donald Trump’s latest target for deregulation: American toilets. The president on Friday said he ordered a federal review of water efficiency standards in bathroom fixtures and complained that “people are flushing toilets 10 times, 15 times as opposed to once" in homes with low-flow appliances.

He said other bathroom fixtures have slowed water to a trickle.

“You can’t wash your hands practically, there’s so little water comes out of the faucet, and the end result is you leave the faucet on and it takes you much longer to wash your hands, you end up using the same amount of water," he said at an event with small-business owners at the White House.

He said the Environmental Protection Agency was looking into the issue on his recommendation.

Trump ordered a federal review of water efficiency standards in bathroom fixtures, complaining that “people are flushing toilets 10 times, 15 times as opposed to once" in homes with low-flow appliances

The internet promptly blew up with seemingly infinite ways to poke fun at the issue: scatological, politically profane, unprintable here. The hashtag #ToiletTrump quickly began trending on Twitter.

One person cast the president’s words in epic Star Wars format: “Water Pressure, Episode VIII," with a big-screen scroll of the impromptu speech.

Trump said Friday it was “common sense" to review standards he said resulted in showers with water “quietly dripping out" and toilets that “end up using more water" because of repeated flushing.

Regulation rollbacks

Trump has championed rolling back regulations since taking office in 2017, with a focus on environmental rules imposed or proposed during the Obama administration. The president routinely portrays himself as a champion of the environment, while his critics say he’s weakened regulations intended to fight climate change, conserve resources and promote clean air and water.

While the president said the EPA was looking at the standards, a review of the WaterSense program was mandated under 2018 legislation passed by Congress that said the agency should look at any regulations adopted before 2012. That means the government is forced to revisit specifications for tank-type toilets, lavatory faucets and faucet accessories, shower heads, flushing urinals, and weather-based irrigation controllers.

Those regulations include a 20% reduction in water use on tank-type toilets compared to standards adopted in 1992, and a 32% reduction in maximum water flow on lavatory faucets, according to the EPA.

Made a difference

But the government has also said that the water savings make a difference -- particularly in bathrooms, which represent more than half of all indoor water use. The EPA says an average family can save $380 in water costs per year and save more than 17 gallons per day by using appliances certified to WaterSense standards.

The president said he’s considering different standards for states with different levels of rainfall.

“There may be some areas where we’ll go the other route, desert areas, but for the most part, you have many states where they have so much water that comes down, it’s called rain, they don’t know what to do with it," he said.

But 40 of 50 state water managers said they expected water shortages under average conditions in some portion of their state over the next decade, according to a 2014 report from the Government Accountability Office.

Trump has similarly complained about light bulb energy efficiency requirements imposed under President Barack Obama, and the administration announced earlier this fall it would roll back the rules.

The president mentioned that effort during Friday’s event, complaining that new energy-efficient bulbs made him appear orange.

Catch all the Business News, Market News, Breaking News Events and Latest News Updates on Live Mint. Download The Mint News App to get Daily Market Updates.
More Less
Subscribe to Mint Newsletters
* Enter a valid email
* Thank you for subscribing to our newsletter.

Recommended For You

Trending Stocks

Get alerts on WhatsApp
Set Preferences My ReadsWatchlistFeedbackRedeem a Gift CardLogout