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Dr. Mona Hanna-Attisha challenges EPA Lead and Copper Rule proposal

Dr. Mona Hanna-Attisha speaks at a book signing

Flint pediatrician, Dr. Mona Hanna-Attisha, testified during a House hearing on Tuesday for the Environmental Protection Agency's proposed changes to the Lead and Copper Rule.

The proposal has been criticized for not being aggressive enough to effectively decrease lead levels in lead-contaminated drinking water.

The crises in Washington D.C., Flint, and Newark, New Jersey framed much of the discussion during the hearing.

Changes to the Lead and Copper Rule would include an inventory of all lead service pipes buried underground and require water systems to replace lead service lines when customers replace lead fixtures in their homes.

Water systems would also be required to test drinking water samples in schools and childcare facilities, and notify customers within 24 hours if tested water samples contain more than 15 parts per billion (ppb) lead.

Some critiques of the proposal are that it does not lower the action level of lead in drinking water from 15 ppb, but instead introduces a trigger level of 10 ppb for water systems to decrease the levels of lead in its water. A further delay for the removal of all lead service pipes is also included.  

Hanna-Attisha requested expedited and total removal of lead service lines, more comprehensive corrosion control treatments, and improved communication and public education.

"Unfortunately the proposed revisions are a missed opportunity and fail to rebuild trust in our nation’s drinking water,” says Hanna-Attisha.

Hanna-Attisha presented Michigan’s recently adopted regulations on lead in drinking water to highlight the deficiencies of the EPA’s proposal.

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MaKayla is a recent Michigan transplant hailing from Arkansas with a deep love for storytelling which has translated to a love for public radio. She loves being outdoors (and welcomes any recommendations for great hiking spots), cooking for her fiancée, and is a budding horticulturist. She is studying Mass Communication at the University of Arkansas Little Rock.
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