FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 30, 2023
Contact: Ashley Sullivan, firstname.lastname@example.org, 917-837-1183
WASHINGTON – WE ACT for Environmental Justice applauds the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for its recent improvements to the Lead and Copper Rule, which will significantly benefit communities of color and low-income communities across the country.
The EPA’s focus on building collective knowledge about where legacy pipes are located and their commitment to 100 percent full lead service line replacement will allow public water systems to identify where and in what communities contamination is most present. As the EPA has stated, there is no safe level of lead exposure, and too often, environmental justice communities bear the brunt of its harmful effects.
One of the most significant changes in the Lead and Copper Rule is the EPA’s decision to eliminate trigger levels and lower the lead action level to 10 parts per billion (ppb) from 15 ppb. This move will enable utilities to address lead pipelines and prevent the contamination of our water supplies. The Lead and Copper Rule explains that exceeding the action level alone is not a violation. Public water systems receive a violation when they fail to perform actions required to address the exceedance, but the violation can only occur once the action level is exceeded. Lowering the action level will allow public water systems to address the contamination in more households.
WE ACT for Environmental Justice commends the EPA’s efforts to prioritize the health and well-being of our communities by taking these crucial steps to protect our water supplies. We look forward to continuing to work collaboratively with the EPA and other stakeholders to ensure that all communities have access to clean and safe drinking water.
For anyone who wants to provide input to the Federal Rule, the EPA is currently holding an open, public comment period for 60 days. More information is available here.
WE ACT for Environmental Justice is a Northern Manhattan membership-based organization whose mission is to build healthy communities by ensuring that people of color and/or low-income residents participate meaningfully in the creation of sound and fair environmental health and protection policies and practices. WE ACT has offices in New York and Washington, D.C. Visit us at weact.org and follow us on Facebook, Twitter/X, and Instagram.