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Asa result, nearly everyone will TO be affected m some way by the impacts of this important law. Big Changes for Water Suppliers For allpublic water systems in America these requirements will mean increased monitoring. Averageannualmorutonngcostsfortheinibal 83 contaminants are estimated to total approximately million dollars. Many systems will need to install or u pgrade trea tment in order to comply with the new requirements.
The total costs of implementing existing and upcoming drinking water regulations is approximately 1 to 2 billion dollars annually for the next ten years. Small Systems: The vast majority of water systems that must comply with the expanding requirements are small systems i. Twenty-five 25 percent of small systems are mobile home parks and 15 percent consist of homeowner associations.
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Due to economic, financial, managerial, planning, capital, and technical limitations, these systems will be heavily impacted by the changing regulatory requirements. Also, the vast majority of past regulatory violations have occurred among small water systems. However, the States do not possess the funding and personnel necessary to carry out even those requirements that were in existence before the SDW A Amendments.
In order to implement the expanding requirements. States will be faced with greater than percent increases in program costs. Due to State and Federal resource constraints, the provision of sorely needed technical, managerial, and financial assistance for small water systems will require the participation of all relevant organizations These three factors are interrelated in the sense thatdnnkingwatersystemsmustmeet the expanding regulatory requirements, yet approximately 95 percent of affected systems are small and very small systems; systems that will need substantial outside assistance in order to attain and maintain compliance.
Due to resource constraints at the Federal and State level, both EPA and State drinking water programs will be able toprovideonly a small portion of that assistance. The result, then, is that EPA and the States must mobilize all relevant groups and organizations into a coordinated effort of providingallnecessaryassistancetosmall watersystems. The effort must eliminate barriers to implementation of dnnkmg water requirements, and effect many social and institutional changes.
Institutional and societal changes arc necessary. Essential changes include: 1 The public must quickly become willing to pay more for safe drinking water, and in many cases substantially more, because the SDWA amendments have provided Americans with a more stringent "definition" of "safe. A single type of contaminant may impose only short-term acute effects, only long-term chronic effects, or both; 2 The public must quickly develop an understanding and appreciation of the?
It is especially important that Americans understand the health benefits associated with controlling those contaminants having only long-term health effects. The vast majority of the contaminants scheduled for regulation by the year impose only long-term health effects at levels which occur in drinking water. If the issue of long-term health effects is not communicated and understood, customers will be unaware of the benefits associated with the treatment improvements for which they arc being asked to pay, and thus resist needed changes.
For example, customers may be asked 10 pay for the installation of treatment necessary for controlling a contaminant having only long-term health effects. If the customers do not possess an appreciation of its health effects, and the contaminant does not impart taste, color, or odor problems, the proposed treatment expenditure will appear to the customers as a waste of money because no benefit is apparent to them; 3 The ongoing proliferation of small, non-viable waler systems must quickly cease, and existing non-viable systems must quickly identify ways to attain and maintain compliance.
Options for consolidation include regionalization, managerial consolidation, and circuit-ndcrs; 4 Inexpensive and effective small system treatment technologies must be developed, marketed, and eventually approved by State PWSS programs. These technologies must be simple to operate and maintain, and also be capable of maintaining compliance; 5 State PWSS programs must expand in order to implement the expanding drinking water requirements.
To hclpfocusthevanousactiviries which need to beaccomplished, EPA is spearhead- ing six Mobilization Initiatives. The common clement among these Initiatives is that each seeks to achieve its specific objectives through the coordinated cffortsof external groups and associations. The Problem Adequate staffing and fund ing will been ticaJ for States to beable to maintain primacy in the face of theadministrati veand field dcmandsof the new regulations.
Asa result, this Initiative is directed toward legislators, governors, and State public health and dnnking water agencies. Mobilization Approach The overall intent of the Initiative is to facilitate Regional, State and constituency activities which will produce expanded dnnking water program resources. It will also include organizations which, through their membership, have ificant influence at the Statelcvcl.
Actions The Initiative actions that these organizations will undertake include briefings for legislators and legislature staff, factsheet and pamphlet development, special studies and reports, newsletter articles, conference presentations, and "peer matching" programs. Objective: Toensurethatsmallwatersystemspossesstheinstirutional arrangements,operatorcapabihties,and State-coordinated support network needed to attain and maintain compli- ance with dnnking water regulations.
The Problem Overall, existing State and local legal systems and institutions do not adequately recognize and address the unique problems experienced by small community water systems CWSs.
Examples of relevant support institutions include State drinking water primacy agencies. State-level policies for use of administrative penalties ; 2 enhance the technical capabilities and professional stature of small water system operators; and, perhaps most importantly; and, 3 facilitate the development and use of alternative institutional arrangements for ownership and operation of small water systems.
Well-chosen and well- planned local arrangements will result in financially viable systems capable of consistent compliance. Participant Organizations Organizations esscnhal to this Initiative include those representing mobile home parks, rural assistance organizations, large uhlities,unlityassocianons,Stateagenaes, EPA Regional Offices, other Federal agencies, county and municipal officials, pro- fessional associations, and State university systems.
Actions The Initiative actions that these organizations will undertake mdude operator training programs, workshops and seminars, simplified training, technical guides, video tapes, computer-based training, large utility outreach programs, and "circuit nder" technical assistance programs to 57040 facilities, monitoring equipment, and other resources. State programs will take action to increase their efforts to promote consolidation, restructuring, administrative penalties, and ensuring new system viability as a means of achieving compliance.
The former focuses upon low-cost small system technology testing and development, while the latter focuses on the overall training needs of BBeresford drinking water community including technology transfer workshops and training.
The cost impacts and technical complexity of existing forms of the best available technologies BATs are daunting, and possibly prohibitive for many small water systems. Treatment techniques that are commonly used by large systems often require too much site-specific engineering to be affordable to small systems. The emphasis is on the development of package or off-the-shelf technologies in order to lower cost impacts, and to enhance understanding of small system regula- tion, management, and technology.
Actions The actions thjt these organizations will undertake include research, development, marketing, and State program approval with respect to affordable and simple treatment technologies for small water systems. Additional actions include the production of drinking water informational materials and workshops for the specific purpose of transferring technical information. The of demonstrate projects involving simple and affordable treatment technologies for small systems will be made available through a Water Supply Resource Network.
Training Subinitiative Tne Problem The SDWA Amendments and the new drinking water regulations have dra- matically increased the need for regulatory and technical training for State and Regional staff, water system managers and operators, and other members of the drinking water community such as local decision-makers and local health officials. Mobilization Approach The intent of the Training Subinitiative is to ensure that drinking water constituency orgaruzationsrespond to all training needs identified by EPA in consultation with key organizations.
Local Health Officials Initiative Audience: County, municipal, and other local health officials Objectives: 1 Enable local heal th officials to provide expert assistance to consumers, primacy agents, and awnts well owners in the areas of contaminant health effects, applicable regula- tory requirements, treatment technology, and source pro- tection with special emphasis on private wells.
The Problem County and other local health officials are most often on the front line of responding to public health concerns since such problems arc almost always a localized occur- rence, especially drinking water problems. Mobilization Approach The intent of this Initiative is to develop effective relationships with organizations representing local health officials, and to facilitate the provision of formal training with respect to drinking water related matters.
EPA will also work to facilitate 570004 between State programs ssx local health officials. Actions Actions these organizations will undertake will occur at the national. State, and Reao levels. They include the development of newsletter articles, guidebooks, conference sessions, and special workshops. Actions may also entail direct contact and assistance within communities, that is, community forums,circuit-rider technical assistance, and pilot outreach self-help programs.
Objectives: 1 Develop a comprehensive training program for NTNCs Aeult on regulatory requirements and options for compliance. Present information at meeting and conferences of associations whose membershipindudesificantnurnbersofNlNCs. Under the new regulations, NTNCs arc being required to meet the same stringent requirements that apply to community water systems. These systems include rural schools, factories, office parks, and Federal facilities which are not customers of community systems.
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Further, NTNCs utilize their own wells or other supply source, and do not serve residential populations. Many NTNCs are not aware that they are in fact regulated as public water systems. In addition, most NTNCs are small systems and possess typical small water system managerial, financial, and technical problems.
The approach includes 1 the preparation of informational materials that target the special si tuations of NTNCs and development of a network to reach those systems, 2 briefing those organizations which represent schools, restaurants, and industrial facilities,3 encouraging and facilitating the development and delivery of training on NTNC requirements, and 4 providing demonstrations regarding the use of innovative approaches to system management, including improved compliance.
Actions Actions these organizations will undertake include the development of newsletter articles, sessionsatnational and State conferences, technical assistance programs, and special factsheets and pamphlets. The Problem There is no question that full implementation of the SDWA Amendments will mean tha t drinking water will be more expensive, especially for those served Adulf small systems.
Therefore, the. Mobilization Approach This Initiative will focus on the development of comprehensive public education materials to be made available to States, the media, national associations, and Federal agencies via public education coalitions. The public must understand that: 1 Public water systems generally provide good water; 2 As our knowledge of health risks increases, and as we become more aware of threats to dnnking water quality, additional and often expensive steps must be taken to maintain safe dnnking water; 3 Safe drinking water will mean higher costs often much higher to consumers; and 4 Direct local action is sometimes necessary to ensure the safety of drinking water.
Participant Organizations Organizations essential to this Initiative include those most directly concerned with dnnking water and public education. Included are the EPA and Adultt. The expanded regulations reao protect both the long-and short-term health of consumers. Grain, ed. Waterbornc Diseases in the U. This, however, does not mean that consumers should assume that all drinking water is wabts of contamination nor docs it mean that public health officials should become complacent in regulating water supplies.
Rather, everyone should understand that drinking water isa precious commodity and that its protection requires diligence, commitment,and a willingness by consumers to pay the costs of a potable supply. The transmission of certain infectious diseases through drinking water has been a public health concern since before the turn of the century. Mass migration of workers into urban areas during the Industrial Revolution coupled with unsanitary practices i.
The presence of these organisms in water led to the frequent transmission of diseases, including such serious illnesses as cholera and typhoid fever. Chlorine was introduced as a disinfectant of water supplies in the United States in The of deaths attributed to waterbome outbreaks namely deaths resulting from typhoid fever dropped to virtually zero in the US by the s see Figure 1. The potential health effects of chemicals in drink- ing wa tcr ha ve also been recognized throughou t this cenrury.
Standardsestablished by the US Public Health Service in the s, s, and s addressed known chemical and microbiological contaminants. Most of these early standardsfocused on the presence of inorganic metals and minerals, such as lead and arsenic These latter substances were recognized at that time primarily for their acute toxiciry and lethal effects. Over the past two decades, great advances have been made in detecting and measuring chemicals present at very low levels in air, soil and water.
This, together wi th ad vances in understanding of chemical toxicology, has led to an increased awareness of and concern for the health consequences of long-term chronic exposure to these substances. Naturally occurring contami- nants are primarily metalsand minerals that enter source water through contact with geological materials. Someof the naturally occurringcontaminants,suchasradon,are radioactive elements.
Man-made chemicals discovered in drinking water include both organic and inorganic compounds used in industrial, reall and agricultural products. Contamination of ground water by certain solvents and degrcasing agents was well- documented in the s and s. More recently, it has become evident that a of pesticides and herbicides are making their way into ground water supplies as well. Some chemical contaminants found in drinking water are a product of the water treatment and delivery pnxessitself.
Recently, increased ses hasbeen given to the ificanccof the Icachingof lead from pipes and solder in home plumbing. At the same time that chemical contaminants were being identified, public health officials around the country discovered that the problem of microbiological organ- isms in drinking water had not been completely resolved.
The of watcrbome disease outbreaks reported by public health officials actually began to increase in the s and s. While some of these outbreaks can be attributed to the improper operation and maintenance of water treatment facilities and improved reporting by public healthofficials.
Consequently, Federal and State drinking water officials have initiated actions to require more rigorous treatment of all water supplies served by surface sources. The SDWA2 Pnor toState health departments had the major responsibility for surveillance and regulation of public water supplies. Drinking water quality was judged according to Public Health Service Standards which were also used by a of States.
Unfortunately,many State programs were severely understaffed and underfunded; therefore, public water systems failed ID receive badly needed surveillance and technical assistance. The Act mandated a major change in the surveillance of drinking water systems by establishing specific roles for the Federal government. In this way, the Act imposes uniformity and consistency in the management of the nation's public water supplies but still respects the historic role played by States in drinking water regulation.
Public water suppliers are ased the day-to-day responsibility of meeting the regulations. To meet this goal, routine monitoring must be performed and must be provided to the pertinent regulatory agency. Violations must be reported to the public and remediated. Failure to perform any of these functions can result in enforcement actions and penalties. Between andEPA regulated approximately 26 dnnkmg water contami- nants.
This law requires EPA to maintain an updated ing of water coolers with lead-based compo- nents and develop guidance for controlling lead contamination in school drinking water supplies. Figure 2 provides a brief historical summary of the Federal government's involvement in drinking water. To date, 48 States and six territories have primacy for the drinking water program.
Although the SDWA Amendments include provisions for Indian tribes to apply forprimacy over drinking water on Indian landsno tribe currently holds this status. Roles in the Public Drinking Water Program The ultimate goal of the drinking water program is to prevent endangerment to human health resulting from the contamination of drinking water supplies.
This mission requires intense cooperation among EPA, State agencies, and the regulated community. Each has a well-defined and imperative role in the regulatory process. The Role of EPA EPA is responsible for 1 national policy direction and program oversight; 2 nsk assessment and standard-setting; 3 technical, administrative, and legal support; 4 research and development; 5 morutonng environmental progress; 6 ensuring the drinking water requirements are understandable and practicable; 7 implementation where States and Indian Tnbes are unwilling or unable to assume primacy; and 8 enforcement assistance cither when requested by pnmacy States or when State Section 2 1 ensuring adequate financing for the planning, de, construction, and operation of the system; 2 operating and maintaining public water systems that comply with all Federal, State, and local regulations; 3 obtaining public support for establishing and collecting adequate user fees; and 4 cooperating with any Federal, State, or local enforcement actions.
The Role of Professional, Trade, and Public Interest Associations Special interest organizations, whoseconstinjeroesareaffeded directlyorindirectly by the expand ing drinking water requirements, shou Id play a ma jor role in referring, informing, training, and otherwise advising their members on drinking water requirements and issues.
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