PANEL DISCUSSION: Safe Drinking Water Act Amendments - Is Our Drinking Water Safe?
Barrett, Bruce R.
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Due to continued concerns over the safety of our drinking water, expressed by the public and others, the United States Congress passed the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA) amendments in June, 1986. Significant regulatory changes have already occurred and are expected to continue over the next few years as a result of the SDWA amendments. The first round of regulations includes setting new or revised concentration limits for 83 compounds. These include synthetic organics, inorganics, metals, microbiological contaminants and radionuclides. After the initial regulation of the 83 compounds, the EPA must identify and regulate 25 additional compounds every 3 years. However, while these regulations are being promulgated, the public continues to express a lack of confidence in some potable water systems. This is evident in Congressional reports, the increasing sales of point of use devices and bottled water consumption. Panel members will discuss key issues surrounding the drinking water industry from their individual perspectives. The panel members will be asked to share with the audience their perception of drinking water quality in general, the effectiveness of regulations and regulators, and any shortcomings they may see in the water supply industry. Following the general discussions from the panel members, questions will be solicited from the audience.
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