Canadian Water and Wastewater Association eBulletin

New CWWA Position Statement on Lead

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CWWA, with input from our Drinking Water Quality Committee and experts on lead in drinking water, has developed a position statement on lead in response to the upcoming revision to the Guideline on Drinking Water for Lead. The new Guideline will significantly lower the recommended MAC for lead, which will impact some utilities operations and infrastructure renewal plans.

The statement recognizes that scientific evidence is increasingly supporting the conclusion that lead levels should be maintained at the lowest level possible (ALARA). The CWWA supports the overall conclusion, and agrees that water utilities should aim to meet this objective through both lead service line replacement and active corrosion control programs. The Association does have some concerns with how the Guideline is implemented, possible degradation of public confidence in water supplies and funding for costly service line replacement. The policy statement is available on the CWWA website.

CWWA is also working on developing a fact sheet for utilities and a second for customers and politicians that will explain the identified health risks of lead exposure and the challenges in meeting the new MAC.