WASHINGTON, D.C. — As part of its commitment to implement sensible protections of drinking water for communities across the country, and as required by the Safe Drinking Water Act, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is proposing 30 currently unregulated contaminants for monitoring in water systems, and submitting this proposal for public comment. The comment period will allow the public and other stakeholders to provide input on the selection of new contaminants for monitoring, and will help determine the best path forward as the EPA seeks to collect data that will inform future decisions about how best to protect drinking water.
Under the authority of the Safe Drinking Water Act, the EPA currently regulates more than 90 contaminants in drinking water. To keep drinking water standards up-to-date with emerging science, the Safe Drinking Water Act requires that the EPA identify as many as 30 unregulated contaminants for monitoring every five years. This current proposal is the third Unregulated Contaminant Monitoring Regulation and includes requirements to monitor for two viruses and 28 chemical contaminants that could be present in drinking water and do not currently have health-based standards.
The EPA is requesting public comment on the proposed list of 30 contaminants until May 2, 2011. Following the public comment period, the EPA will consider this important input before the list is scheduled to be finalized in 2012, with sampling to be conducted from 2013 to 2015. Sampling will take place at all systems serving more than 10,000 people and at a representative sampling of systems serving less than 10,000 people.
For more information about the proposed list of contaminants, visit http://water.epa.gov/lawsregs/rulesregs/sdwa/ucmr/ucmr3/index.cfm.