Newsletter: New State Regulations Aimed at Getting the Lead Out

Did you know that Michigan community water suppliers and managers are on the clock to provide the Department of Environmental Quality with a current inventory of service line materials under the state’s new lead and copper regulations? The distribution systems materials inventory, based on available information, must be submitted to the Michigan DEQ by Jan. 1, 2020.

A comprehensive distribution systems materials inventory and verification methodology must also be completed by Jan.1, 2025, and updated every five years.

Experts say Michigan’s lead and copper rules, approved earlier this year, are the most stringent in the world when applied to cities with lead pipes. They are aimed safeguarding residents from lead in their drinking water.

Reforms to the state’s standards were made through administrative rules proposed by Gov. Rick Snyder and the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality. The rules went through a yearlong administrative process, widely supported by public health experts and environmental advocacy groups.

The new rules:

  • Require public water systems to replace all lead service lines.
  • Reduce the lead action level from 15 parts per billion to 12 ppb by 2025.
  • Require a second water sample collection at sites served by lead service lines.

“I applaud the state’s efforts to replace lead service lines and reduce lead action levels,” said Samuel Moore, Croswell’s city manager. “The need for these lead service lines to be replaced is obvious.
“But these new rules leave a lot of unanswered questions and place a heavy burden on the local water utility.”

Read the full newsletter.