A House subcommittee this week took up Rep. Joe Knollenberg’s (R-Mich.) quest to repeal part of a 1992 law that gave the feds license to require that new toilets be low-flow. Though plumbing manufacturers and environmentalists say otherwise, Knollenberg and 82 other reps contend that the new toilets, which flush no more than 1.6 gallons versus the old standard of 3.6 gallons, frequently require double-flushing or worse. Rep. Richard Burr (R-N.C.), who read his statement objecting to the law (which also led to low-flow shower regulations) off a roll of toilet paper: “How is water conservation achieved when a person has to flush more than once or take a 10-minute shower instead of a five-minute one?”

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