(November 13, 2019) – EPA’s proposed new Lead and Copper Rule was published today in the Federal Register, initiating a 60-day public comment period that will close January 13, 2020.
As previously reported in the Clean Water Current, this proposal could impact clean water utilities due to its encouraged use of orthophosphate as a corrosion control technology (CCT). NACWA had previously outlined concerns with EPA over a standardized approach that encourages orthophosphate as the optimal method of corrosion control because downstream clean water utilities are not only witnessing more stringent effluent limits for phosphorus, but they are also bearing the cost of excess nutrient removal from upstream phosphorus inputs. While protection of public health via appropriate CCT is critical, the move towards use of orthophosphate as the standard could present significant challenges for clean water utilities.
NACWA will be submitting comments on the proposed rule by the January 13 deadline. A number of requests to extend the 60-day comment period have already been filed with EPA, although it is unclear if the Agency will grant an extension. Members with questions about the rule or NACWA’s efforts should contact Emily Remmel, NACWA’s Director of Regulatory Affairs.