On January 4, 2011, President Obama signed legislation revising the definition for “lead free” within the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA) as it pertains to “pipe, pipe fittings, plumbing fittings, and fixtures”. The changes are due to go into effect 36 months after the date enacted, on January 4, 2014.
These new federal regulations are challenging the water industry to “get the lead out” – literally.
States such as California, Vermont, and Maryland (2012) now have regulations regarding the weighted average lead content of 0.25 percent or less based on wetted surface area. In 2010, NSF/ANSI Standard 61 added a new “annex,” Annex G to demonstrate compliance to California AB1953.
The Annex G requirements are being moved to NSF/ANSI 372 (with the addition of content verification testing) to show compliance to the new SDWA law. At that point, the requirements will be mandated in all 50 states.
That’s not the only standard influencing regulation. A previous annex of Standard 61, Annex F, introduced in 2007, focuses on a performance standard for chemical extraction or leaching. Currently, forty-six (46) states across the U.S. have laws in place regulating the chemical extraction performance of lead in drinking water system components, as currently defined in NSF/ANSI Standard 61.
A new performance standard for chemical extraction took effect on July 1, 2012, reducing the Total Allowable Concentration (TAC) of leached lead in meters by two-thirds, from 15 micrograms per liter, or 15 μg/L, to just to 5 μg/L.
Now is the time to make sure the meters in your system meet present as well as future lead content and performance requirements.
The Virginia Department of Health issued a memo to all municipalities discussing changes coming in January, 2014. Read more about the Safe Water Drinking Act.
On January 4, 2011, President Obama signed legislation to amend the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA) to reduce lead in drinking water. The enacted language can be found here.
In late 2009, NSF International and the Association of State Drinking Water Administrators conducted a survey of U.S. state drinking water agencies about their recognition and use of NSF/ANSI Standards.