Trump EPA overhaul of lead pipeline guidelines enables hazardous pipes to remain in the ground in Chicago and other cities

 Trump EPA overhaul of lead pipeline guidelines enables hazardous pipes to remain in the ground in Chicago and other cities

Chicago has more lead water pipes than any other American city, yet federal guidelines revealed Tuesday by the Trump administration likely will not need anything brand-new to avoid property owners and occupants from ingesting the brain-damaging metal.

Physicians and researchers say that unless water drawn from home faucets is properly filtered, the only way to keep the lead out in older cities like Chicago is by changing pipes linking houses and small apartment structures to community water products.

Trump appointees declined the expert guidance, picking instead to tinker with policies embraced three years ago that are extensively seen as inadequate.

Andrew Wheeler, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency administrator, called the changes a significant enhancement of what is known as the Lead and Copper Guideline. But the small print of the new regulations reveal the Trump EPA efficiently delayed lead pipeline replacements for as much as 3 decades and, in some cases, enabled cities to keep toxic pipes in the ground indefinitely.

“They munched around the edges but did not essentially repair the issue,” stated Erik Olson, a lawyer with the nonprofit Natural Resources Defense Council who unsuccessfully sued for changes in federal guidelines throughout the 1990 s. “That’s truly disappointing and totals up to a missed out on chance.”

A piece of the old lead pipe is seen that a construction crew is replacing with a copper pipe to the new water main in the 113 block of S. Yale on Feb., 23, 2016.

A piece of the old lead pipeline is seen that a building team is changing with a copper pipe to the new water pipe in the 113 block of S. Yale on Feb., 23,2016 ( Abel Uribe/ Chicago Tribune)

Both the EPA and the Centers for Illness Control and Avoidance concluded years ago there is no safe level of exposure to lead. More just recently, EPA researchers and academic researchers have found the toxic metal can leach into drinking water if faucets haven’t been used for a few hours or if service lines have been scrambled by street work

The new regulations deny the EPA of a bigger stay with require Chicago and other cities to begin taking on the remaining hazard to public health, which ended up being the subject of nationwide attention after high levels of lead began flo

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Redak staff

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