Posts made in February 2024

UCMR5 Third Set of Data Released by EPA

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has posted the third set of results from the Unregulated Contaminant Monitoring Rule 5 (UCMR5). Enclosed please find EPA’s summary of the results to date (ucmr5-data-summary_0).

Link to EPA Website with UCMR5 information and data files:

Text copied from the EPA website at the link above: “UCMR 5 was published in the Federal Register on December 27, 2021. UCMR 5 requires monitoring for 29 per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) and lithium. Sample collection under UCMR 5 will be from January 2023 through December 2025. The data released to date represent approximately 24% of the total results that the EPA expects to receive. Occurrence data will be updated on a quarterly basis until completion of data reporting in 2026. Data are added and possibly removed or updated over the course of this reporting cycle following further review by analytical laboratories, public water systems (PWSs), states, and the EPA.”

Another location with UCMR5 data (where you can download results in Excel file), here is link to EPA’s Data Finder Website for UCMR5 results:

Update on Non-Cancer CrVI Health Effects

Update on CrVI Non-Cancer Health Effects.
On January 31, 2024, for public review and comment, the State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB) Division of Drinking Water (DDW) posted an updated OEHHA review of hexavalent chromium (CrVI) non-cancer health effects. Written comments are due February 19, 2024. A copy of DDW’s announcement and a copy of the OEHHA non-cancer health effects report are enclosed (notice-3cr6-mcl-013124_revisedcr6noncancerupdate112123). Note: When OEHHA reviews health effects for constituents it considers to be a carcinogen, OEHHA will determine values (“Health Protective Concentration” or HPC) for both cancer and noncancer endpoints. OEHHA will use the lower of the two values to set the Public Health Goal (PHG). In the enclosed document, the proposed HPC for noncancer health effects is proposed at 5 parts per billion (ppb). Previously OEHHA had proposed a non-cancer HPC value of 2 ppb for CrVI. OEHHA set the PHG for CrVI at 0.02 ppb (based on cancer endpoint). On June 16, 2023, DDW proposed the CrVI at 10 ppb.

Also, in response to public comments received on the proposed MCL, DDW conducted an analysis of system consolidation and blending to comply with the proposed CrVI MCL. A description of DDW’s analysis is also enclosed.

Update on two Federal Regulations regarding PFAS: (1) on December 15, 2023, EPA submitted the final PFAS MCLs to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for review, (2) on December 6, 2023, EPA submitted the proposal to designate PFOA and PFOS as hazardous substances under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA or Superfund) to OMB for review. As of this morning, both of these regulations are still undergoing review at OMB.

EPA Approves Analytical Methods, TSCA Fluoridation Lawsuit

EPA Approves Alternative Analytical Methods
In the January 30, 2024 Federal Register, (Federal Register_Analytical Methods Approval_2024-01-30), EPA is publishing the approval of 93 alternative analytical methods for determining compliance with drinking water regulations. The methods cover general physical and microbiological constituents, disinfectants, inorganic and organic chemicals and radionuclides. These methods are in effect as of publication in today’s Federal Register.

TSCA Fluoridation Lawsuit
The trial of the lawsuit filed under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) to ban the addition of fluoride to drinking water restarts January 31, 2024. Bloomberg Law published an article about the trial:

Background on TSCA Lawsuit
A simplified highlight of some key dates in the case is presented below :
1. November 2016 – a petition was submitted to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to ban the addition of fluoride to drinking water under TSCA. The stated objective of the petition was to “protect the public and susceptible subpopulations from the neurotoxic risks of fluoride by banning the addition of fluoridation chemicals to water.”
2. The petition was submitted by the following organizations: Fluoride Action Network, Food & Water Watch, Organic Consumers Association, the American Academy of Environmental Medicine, the International Academy of Oral Medicine and Toxicology, and several individuals.
3. February 2017 – EPA denied the petition.
4. April 2017 – petitioners filed lawsuit against EPA.
5. EPA asked court to dismiss lawsuit.
6. December 2017 – court ruled against EPA and allows lawsuit to proceed.
7. EPA asks court to limit the scope of the lawsuit to only the information included in the original November 2016 petition.
8. The court denied EPA’s request to limit the scope of review.
9. Seven-day trial held in June 2020.
10. Since the June 2020 trial, there has been additional activity between the parties and the court, one key item was the judge’s decision to wait for additional information on fluoride’s potential neurotoxic effects.

Registration for EPA Meeting with NDWAC on Proposed LCRI

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will consult with the National Drinking Water Advisory Council (NDWAC) on the proposed Lead and Copper Rule (LCR) Improvements (published December 6, 2023, in the Federal Register). The virtual meeting with the NDWAC will be on January 31, 2024, from 10:30 am to 5:30 pm (ET). This morning, EPA posted the link to register to join the webcast.

Link to register:

EPA to Brief NDWAC on Proposed LCRI

Good morning to all,

In the January 11, 2024 Federal Register (NDWAC Meeting_LCRI_2024-01-31) EPA announced that the National Drinking Water Advisory Council (NDWAC) will meet on January 31, 2024, from 10:30 am to 5:30 pm (ET).

As stated in the enclosed Federal Register: “The primary purpose of the meeting is for EPA to consult with the NDWAC as required by the SDWA on a final National Primary Drinking Water Regulation: Lead and Copper Rule Improvements.”

This will be a virtual meeting of the NDWAC. According to the Federal Register notice, information on how to register, and the meeting agenda will be posted at the following location:

In the December 6, 2023, Federal Register, EPA published the proposed Lead and Copper Rule Improvements (LCRI) for a 60-day public comment period. Public comments are due by February 5, 2024. EPA will hold a virtual public hearing on January 16, 2024.

Link to the Federal Register copy of the proposed LCRI:

Link to register for the January 16, 2024, virtual public hearing:

Here are a few highlights from the proposed LCRI:

• Eliminates the 10 ppb trigger value in the Lead and Copper Rule Revisions (LCRR), and instead proposes to lower the lead Action Level from 15 ppb to 10 ppb.
• If a public water system has lead service lines (LSLs), or galvanized requiring replacement service lines, they must all be replaced within 10 years, with some exceptions.
• For tap samples collected from a home served by an LSL, the utility must collect five one-liter samples, and test for lead in the first and fifth liter (and the highest result will be used in determining the 90th percentile lead value).

Cross Connection Control Policy, PFAS Update

SWRCB Public Hearing on Final Cross Connection Control Policy Handbook
The State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB) posted the enclosed revised notice (revisednotice_cccph_120523 ) of the Board’s consideration of the final Cross Connection Control Policy Handbook at tomorrow’s Board meeting. The purpose of this revised notice is to highlight the change in start time for the Board’s meeting from 9:30 am to 9:00 am.

The SWRCB’s meeting can be viewed at either of the following links:

Reminder: the Board’s consideration of the final Direct Potable Reuse (DPR) regulations is scheduled to follow after consideration of the Cross Connection Control Policy Handbook.

EPA Submits Final MCLs to OMB for Review
On March 29, 2023, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) proposed individual Maximum Contaminant Levels (MCLs) for PFOA and PFOS and proposed a Hazard Index MCL for four additional PFAS for public review and comment. EPA held a public hearing on May 4, 2023, and public comments were due by May 30, 2023.

On Friday, January 15, 2023, EPA submitted the final PFAS MCLs to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for review. This would be the final step before EPA publishes the final MCLs. No other details are available.

EPA Publishes Progress Report on the PFAS Strategic Roadmap
In October 2021 EPA released the document: “PFAS Strategic Roadmap: EPA’s Commitments to Action, 2021-2024.” The document describes PFAS activities for several different EPA offices including: (1) Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention, (2) Office of Water, (3) Office of Land and Emergency Management, (4) Office of Air and Radiation, and (5) Office of Research and Development.

The following drinking water actions were included October 2021 Strategic Roadmap:
1. Undertake nationwide monitoring for PFAS in drinking water, final rule expected fall 2021 (this is the Unregulated Contaminant Monitoring Rule 5 (UCMR5) that is currently ongoing and includes monitoring for 29 PFAS).
2. Establish national primary drinking water regulations for PFOA and PFOS.
3. Publish health advisories for GenX and PFBS.
4. Publish updates to PFAS analytical methods to monitor drinking water, expected Fall 2024.

Last week, EPA released the Second Annual Progress Report for the PFAS Strategic Roadmap (EPA PFAS Strategic Roadmap_Second Progress Rpt_Dec 2023).

SWRCB to Vote to Adopt DPR Regulations

On December 19, 2023, the State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB) will vote on a resolution to adopt the final Direct Potable Reuse (DPR) regulations. A copy of the meeting agenda, the Board agenda item and the Resolution to adopt the DPR regulations are enclosed (notice_sbddw-23-001_dpr_101923

SWRCB Agenda Item

SWRCB Agenda_2023-12-19

SWRCB Resolution to Adopt DPR Regulations ). The SWRCB meeting begins at 9:00 am.

The SWRCB meeting will be webcast and can be viewed at either of the following links:

The agenda item before the vote on adopting the final DPR regulations, will be the SWRCB’s vote on adopting the Cross Connection Control Policy Handbook as final.

AB 574, signed into law in October 2017, required that the State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB) adopt uniform criteria for Direct Potable Reuse (DPR) by December 31, 2023. “Direct potable reuse is the planned introduction of recycled water either directly into a public water system or into a raw water supply immediately upstream of a water treatment plant.” The bill required that before adopting the criteria, the SWRCB submit the criteria to an Expert Panel for review.

In June 2021, the SWRCB and the National Water Research Institute (NWRI) convened an expert review panel as required by Section 13561.2 of the Water Code to review DDW’s proposed DPR criteria. The charge of the expert panel was to review the proposed criteria (regulations) for DPR and make a finding as to whether, in its expert opinion, the proposed criteria would adequately protect public health. The Expert Panel held public meetings on August 24 and 25, 2021, December 1, 2021; January 28, 2022; and February 28, 2022. In March 2022, the DPR Expert Panel released a draft memorandum presenting their review and recommendations of the draft DPR criteria. DDW staff prepared and posted a response to the Expert Panel’s draft memo. In July 2022, the SWRCB posted the Memorandum of Findings: Expert Panel Preliminary Findings and Recommendations on Draft DPR Criteria. “The Panel’s Preliminary….Finding is that the Early Draft of Anticipated Criteria for Direct Potable Reuse dated August 17, 2021, adequately protects public health.”

On July 20, 2023, the SWRCB published the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking for the proposed DPR regulations. A public hearing was held on September 7, 2023, and the deadline to submit written comments was September 8, 2023. On October 19, 2023, the SWRCB posted a “Notice of Public Availability of Changes to Proposed Direct Potable Reuse Regulations and Addition of Material to the Rulemaking Record.” Public comments were due by November 6, 2023. A copy of the October 19, 2023 notice is also enclosed and shows the final changes to the proposed DPR regulations.

Proposed LCR Improvements Published in Federal Register

In the December 6, 2024 Federal Register, EPA published the proposed Lead and Copper Rule Improvements (LCRI) for a 60-day public comment period. Public comments are due by February 5, 2024. EPA will hold a virtual public hearing on January 16, 2024.

Link to the Federal Register proposed LCRI:

Link to register for the January 16, 2024 public hearing:

December 6, 2023, EPA is holding a 1-hour “informational” webinar for the public on the proposed LCRI. Link to register:

Pre-Publication Version of LCR Improvements

November 30, 2024, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) posted a copy of the Lead and Copper Rule Improvements (LCRI) rule (this is a pre-publication version submitted for publication in the Federal Register).

Enclosed is a copy of the pre-publication LCRI and a Fact Sheet and FAQ prepared by EPA (13_lcri-states-and-systems-fact-sheet_final

proposed-lcri_pre-pub-version-11_29_23 )

There is additional information and documents (located towards the middle of the web page under the heading “Supporting Materials and Fact Sheets”) at the following website: