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The Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA)

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The Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA). SAFE 210. Overview . Enacted in 1974 to: Protect public health by regulating the nation’s public drinking water supply Amended in 1986 and 1996 1986: Establish NPDWS for 83 specified contaminants

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Presentation Transcript
overview
Overview
  • Enacted in 1974 to:
    • Protect public health by regulating the nation’s public drinking water supply
  • Amended in 1986 and 1996
    • 1986: Establish NPDWS for 83 specified contaminants
    • 1996: Emphasis on public involvement and public right to know (i.e., annual reports). Identified need for funding.
slide3
Drinking water comes from a ‘watershed’ which is the land area over which water flows into the river, lake, or reservoir; not just the part of the river or lake that you can see

www.epa.gov

who is regulated
Who is regulated?
  • Public water systems
    • “System for the provision of water to the public for human consumption through pipes or other constructed conveyances, if such such system has at least 15 service connections or regularly serves at least 25 individuals”1
  • Chain of command

EPA State Local water supplier

1 SDWA § 1401(4)(A)

guiding regulations
Guiding Regulations
  • National Primary Drinking Water Regulations (NPDWR)
    • Set enforceable maximum contaminant levels for particular contaminants in drinking water or required ways to treat water to remove contaminants
  • National Secondary Drinking Water Regulations (NSDWR)
    • Relate to the aesthetics of water, not health effects (i.e., color, taste, odor)
national primary drinking water regulations
National Primary Drinking Water Regulations
  • Standards set through a 3-step process:
    • EPA ID’s contaminants that may affect public health.
    • EPA sets a health goal (MCLG)
    • EPA determines a maximum contaminant level (MCL) or a required treatment technique
national secondary drinking water regulations
National Secondary Drinking Water Regulations
  • Non-enforceable guidelines
  • Focuses on cosmetics and aesthetics of water
major components to the sdwa
Major Components to the SDWA
  • EPA sets standards to help ensure consistent quality in our Nations water supply.
  • Contaminants are prioritized by Risk along with Cost Benefit Analysis
  • National Primary Drinking Water Regulations set enforceable maximum contaminant levels & require ways to treat water to remove contaminants
enforcement
Enforcement
  • Public notice requirements
  • State enforcement
  • EPA enforcement
  • Citizen suits
consumer confidence reports ccr
Consumer Confidence Reports (CCR)

Some information gathered in reports include:

  • Identification of source water
  • Information on detected contaminants
  • Violations of requirements
  • Explanations of variances/exemptions
  • Explanation of expected contamiants
funding to the states
Funding to the States
  • The EPA provides grants to implement state drinking water programs
    • Small water systems get special consideration because of their limitations on financing system improvements and monitoring.
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