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Latest News from the EPA

Lead and Copper Rule Improvements from EPA

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released its proposed Lead and Copper Rule Improvements (LCRI) on November 30, 2023. The improvements are designed to advance the 2021 Lead and Copper Rule Revisions.

Highlights include:

  • Complete removal of all lead and galvanized service lines in the U.S. with increased responsibilities for water systems including LSL inventory activities and a requirement to provide lead reducing pitcher filters or other point-of-use devices after disturbance to or replacement of LSLs

  • Lowering the “Action Level” for lead in tap water from 15 ppb to 10 ppb

  • More stringent protocols for tap water sampling for lead

  • More consumer education and outreach about lead by public water systems

There is a 60-day public comment period on the LCRI, scheduled to end February 5, 2024. You may submit a comment here—click the green box and follow instructions. The EPA will also host a virtual public hearing on January 16, 2024. For verbal comments, register here.

Visit the EPA website for tips on submitting successful comments.

New Rule from EPA Would Target Struggling Water Systems

The U.S. has over 150,000 public water systems and the vast majority serve small communities of under 10,000 people. These small water systems often lack resources to maintain infrastructure and to meet water quality regulations. Research shows that small and rural water systems that serve low-income communities of color are more likely to be in violation of drinking water quality regulations.

In response to a 2018 mandate from Congress, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has been developing the Water System Restructuring Assessment Rule (WSRAR). The rule is designed to target public water systems that are persistently in violation of the National Primary Drinking Water Regulations. The proposed rule release is now anticipated in early 2024 and there will be a 60-day public comment period.

Learn more from this short article by our partners at NOLA: The Greater New Orleans Water Collaborative.


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