Environmental News: Media CenterMain page | Archive
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Press contact: Elliott Negin at 202-289-2405 or Erik Olson at 202-289-2360
If you are not a member of the press, please write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org or see our contact page.
New Bill Would Help Clean Up Lead-in-Drinking-Water Problem, Says NRDC
Statement by Erik Olson, Senior Attorney, Natural Resources Defense Council
WASHINGTON (May 4, 2004) - Today, Jim Jeffords (I-VT) and Paul Sarbanes (D-MD) introduced a bill in the Senate that would help clean up lead contamination in the nation's drinking water. At the same time, Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC) and Reps. Henry Waxman (D-CA), Hilda Solis (D-CA), Ed Markey (D-MA), Chaka Fattah (D-PA), Albert Wynn (D-MD) Jim Moran (D-VA), Steny Hoyer (D-MD), and Chris Van Hollen (D-MD) introduced a companion bill in the House. The legislation, "Lead Free Drinking Water Act of 2004," would require the Environmental Protection Agency to review and strengthen the rules for lead in drinking water within 18 months, speed up the replacement of lead service lines, overhaul and strengthen public notice and public education requirements, and require water systems with lead problems to provide certified water filters to remove high lead levels while they work on long-term solutions. The bill also would tighten water testing and treatment requirements, clamp down on lead-containing faucets and fixtures (dropping allowable lead levels from 8 percent to 0.2 percent), strengthen lead testing in schools, and authorize $200 million per year to help cities replace lead service lines.
Below is a statement by NRDC Senior Attorney Erik Olson, the author of "What's On Tap?," a June 2003 study of drinking water safety in 19 U.S. cities:
"This bill would go a long way to protect our children from the scourge of lead contamination, which can damage their developing brains and lead to lower intelligence and other health problems. Given the extent of lead contamination in Washington, Boston and other cities, and the slow and woefully inadequate EPA response, it is time for Congress to step forward to safeguard our children."
The Natural Resources Defense Council is a national, nonprofit organization of scientists, lawyers and environmental specialists dedicated to protecting public health and the environment. Founded in 1970, NRDC has more than 1 million members and e-activists nationwide, served from offices in New York, Washington, Los Angeles and San Francisco.
Get Updates and Alerts
NRDC Gets Top Ratings from the Charity Watchdogs
- Charity Navigator awards NRDC its 4-star top rating.
- Worth magazine named NRDC one of America's 100 best charities.
- NRDC meets the highest standards of the Wise Giving Alliance of the Better Business Bureau.