The market has moved away from the majority of the old traditional metallic-based piping materials, said Bryan Heffernan, technical director-mechanical, James L Williams Middle East.
In an interview with MEP Middle East, Heffernan said: "The days of using cast iron in drainage systems and copper in water services as the norm have well and truly surpassed.
"Today’s market is primarily focused on plastic-based pipe materials with specific focus on more environmentally friendly and sustainable types of materials.
"With the introduction of the various local green building certification systems (Estidama in Abu Dhabi and Sa’fat in Dubai) and international equivalent systems (LEED and BREEAM) across the region there is a primary focus today on reducing or eliminating lead and chlorine content in materials and utilising more recyclable content."
He added that there are also some projects such as Masdar in Abu Dhabi and Dubai Expo which provide some additional focus on the environmental impacts of certain types of materials, such as the lead and chlorine content of PVC (polyvinyl chloride), making sourcing of material very challenging not just for plumbing materials but for other material and components in the building services industry.
Heffernan added: "We are finding that consultant’s specifications are beginning to shift material requirements for drainage pipework away from uPVC to materials such as HDPE (high-density polyethylene) in order to meet the project’s environmental targets.
"In addition, we are finding more emphasis been taken on proprietary piping systems such as silent pipes to deal with noise produced by waste as it passes through the drainage systems within buildings."
To read the entire story, check out #1302 of MEP Middle East, which will be out on the first week of February.