Drinking water systems are critical to public health, economy and have a huge impact on our quality of life. Americans all across the country depend on their water systems for safe and clean water.
To make sure that the water we drink and use is safe and clean, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) has established national safety standards for drinking water. These regulations are regularly updated as new scientific and health related information becomes available.
The safety of water is determined by levels of certain chemicals or microorganisms present in drinking water. The Maximum Contaminant Level (MCL) and Action Level (AL) are the health standards established by the USEPA that all public water systems should adhere to. The MCL or AL is the highest level of a contaminant that is allowed in drinking water.
Between 1976 and 2002, EPA established 14 major rules in accordance with the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA). These rules have resulted in the regulation of 90 contaminants. Each regulation addresses one of two major categories of risk: microbial contaminants, or chemical/radiological contaminants.
Most of these EPA regulations set a maximum contaminant level or required treatment technique for a contaminants that water suppliers need to adhere to along with ongoing contaminants monitoring and reporting requirements. You can learn more about water compliance and EPA guidelines here.
While the USEPA and state governments set and enforce drinking water standards, at United Water we believe that it’s our direct responsibility to ensure that the drinking water we provide always meets or exceeds all state and federal health standards. With a history of almost 140 years, we have constantly improved compliance, quality and efficiency of our water supplies, while building a stellar team of local employees.