In The News
By Elizabeth Miller, Aug 26, 2015.
The two cornerstone pieces of federal legislation dictating the quality of what comes out of our taps at home and what protections are promised to its headwaters, the Safe Drinking Water Act and the Clean Water Act, both date to the 1970s. Yet even within those rules, the EPA is forced to balance economic concerns against environmental ones, to consider the average rather than the vulnerable edges, and to fight political battles that shift with elections. And the rules don’t really equate to “safe” or “clean,” despite their names.
“People think ‘Oh the drinking water standards, that must be the most protective thing there is,’ but that’s not always the case,” says Rachel Conn, interim executive director of water watchdog group Amigos Bravos. “For some parameters, there are water quality standards that protect aquatic life that are more protective.”
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