Public water fountains: the AGEC law for public establishments

Reminder of the AGEC Act

In 2020, France decreed the implementation of the AGEC law, also known by its full name: the Anti-Waste for a Circular Economy law.

One of the aims of this law is to drastically reduce the number of single-use plastic products, with the ultimate goal of eliminating all single-use plastic by 2040.

Every year since 2020, another step has been taken in this direction, with reusable and sustainable solutions gradually replacing single-use plastic objects.

A few reminders of the dates:


  • Publication of the Ati-Gaspillage pour une Économie Circulaire law (AGEC law)
      JANUARY 2021

  • The first product ban: straws, disposable cutlery, fidget spinners, takeaway cup lids, expanded polystyrene boxes, steak picks, balloon stems, plastic confetti and all oxodegradable plastic objects.
  • Deployment of bulk goods in retail outlets.
  • Ban on distributing free plastic bottles in companies.
      JANUARY 2022

  • Establishments open to the public (ERP) are required to provide drinking water fountains for visitors.
      JANUARY 2023

  • Disposable crockery is banned in Fast Food outlets for meals served on the premises.


The AGEC Act and its regulations for ERP buildings

Since 1 January 2022, establishments open to the public have been obliged to provide visitors with a drinking water fountain free of charge.

Decree no. 2020-1724 defines the conditions and methods of application, as well as the establishments concerned, depending on their category. At present, the establishments concerned are divided into 3 categories:

  • Category 1: from 1,501 people
  • Category 2: between 701 and 1,500 people
  • Category 3: between 301 and 700 people

As a minimum, an ERP must therefore provide a drinking water fountain for every 301 people or more (including visitors, customers and employees), then an additional public fountain for every 300 people.

This includes

  • Public entertainment venues such as stadiums and concert halls,
  • Sports halls, dojos, gymnasiums,
  • Educational establishments (schools, colleges, lycées, universities),
  • Cultural establishments (museums, exhibition galleries, cinemas),
  • Administrative establishments,
  • Business premises.

The procedures for applying the AGEC law to public water fountains are also defined in the above-mentioned decree.

In concrete terms, and to quote the definition given in Article D. 541-340: “a drinking water fountain is any drinking water dispensing device connected to a drinking water network, enabling a drinking container to be filled”.


Mistral’s response

Developed exclusively for public buildings, Mistral Constructeur’s public fountains are deliberately simple to use and maintain.

Connected directly to the city’s water network, this public water cooler dispenses tempered water filtered by container detection. No contact, so no risk of bacteriological contamination, especially in high-traffic areas such as category 3 public buildings (between 301 and 700 people).

What’s more, thanks to its 2 distribution niches, this model is also suitable for people with reduced mobility (PRM) and children.

It also benefits from Mistral’s patented disinfection technology: the ToBeSure® system. This system uses the instant action of ultraviolet radiation to eliminate germs and bacteria that may be present in mains water.

Thanks to Mistral’s public water cooler, public buildings will be equipped in accordance with the AGEC law and will be able to offer the public a safe, free and responsible hydration solution.

For more information on public fountains, please contact us.

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