211375 Federal “Lead & Copper Rule” and Its Relation to Public Health

Monday, November 9, 2009: 5:42 PM

Paul Schwartz, BA , Clean Water Action, Washington, DC, DC
An exploration and discussion of the explicit and implicit purposes of the Lead and Copper Rule (LCR), a provision of the Safe Drinking Water Act promulgated into law in 1991, as they relate to lead exposure at the tap. We will explore whether water utility compliance with the LCR is sufficient to address public health risks from lead-contaminated water. We will also comment on the public health gaps that are likely to remain after proposed LCR revisions are finalized and whether further refinements to the LCR can close the gap, or if a new model such as setting a public health based enforceable at-the-tap standard for lead should be explored anew. We will also discuss how the complexities of "simultaneous compliance" with various safe drinking water and clean water goals and how issues of infrastructure finance can contribute to sub-optimal conditions leading to more, not less, lead flowing from our nation's taps.

Learning Objectives:
1. Explain the elements and purposes of the Federal Lean and Copper Rule (LCR). 2. Evaluate whether the LCR lessens key populations exposure to lead and identify gaps that may exist. 3. Discuss the gaps in the LCR and how to fill them. 4. Formulate next legislative, regulatory and public education steps to fix the LCR. 5. Assess whether an enforceable standard, or maximum contaminant level (MCL) for lead-at-the tap is politically or scientifically feasible and/or desirable.

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am the National Policy Coordinator for Clean Water Action. For 30 years I have been working at the federal, state and local level on drinking water safety and affordability issues. I am currently on the Board of the Clean Water Network and the Campaign for Safe and Affordable Drinking Water. I have facilitated and coordinated many presentations, conferences, panels etc...about water issues.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.