News for release:
Washington, D.C. -- Wednesday,
June 23, 2004
The information represents lead monitoring conducted by 89 percent of the nation's large and medium drinking water systems. Together these systems serve more than 200 million people. In the United States, there are 834 large water systems, which serve more than 50,000 people, and 7,833 medium systems that serve 3,300 - 50,000 people.
Under EPA regulations, drinking water utilities sample water for lead from a representative cross-section of customers. If customer tap samples from more than 10 percent of the homes served by a single system exceed the15 parts per billion (ppb) action level for lead, the utility must control corrosion, increase monitoring, educate the public and, in some cases, replace lead service lines.
The data received to date show
that 12 large and 73 medium systems exceeded the 15 ppb lead action level
in monitoring periods concluded after 2003. Since 2000, 27 large and 237
medium systems have exceeded the action level in one or more monitoring
periods. The data received to date show that fewer than 4 percent of water
systems have exceeded the lead action level since 2000.
There are approximately 53,000
community water systems in the United States. EPA is continuing to collect
lead-monitoring information and will update its findings throughout the
summer. A summary of the findings for large and medium systems and related
data is available on EPA's Web site at: http://www.epa.gov/safewater/lcrmr/implement.html
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