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Statement from American Water Works Association on the Environmental Working Group's report on Tap Water Quality Testing and Violations
Date:12/11/2009

On December 12, 2009, the Environmental Working Group (EWG) will launch an online, interactive database on tap water quality. The data has been compiled from state environment and health agencies. Tom Curtis, deputy executive director of AWWA, issued the following statement concerning the database.

Washington (Vocus) December 11, 2009 -- On December 12, 2009, the Environmental Working Group (EWG) will launch an online, interactive database on tap water quality. The data has been compiled from state environment and health agencies. Tom Curtis, deputy executive director of AWWA, issued the following statement concerning the database.

“Water professionals nationwide share Environmental Working Group’s (EWG) interest in protecting our precious water sources and assuring safe water at the tap.

“Americans can celebrate that the quality of drinking water in the United States is better than ever. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency reports that approximately 92 percent of water systems met all heath-based standards under the Safe Drinking Water Act in 2008. Those standards are more protective than at any time in our nation’s history.

“Still, there is work to be done. More than 96 percent of health-based Safe Drinking Water Act violations occur at small utilities with fewer than 10,000 customers. These utilities often struggle with the expense of upgrading facilities to meet new regulations. The large expense of installing new treatment is borne by the small populations in these communities. The government could help by creating a federal water infrastructure bank that provides low-interest loans to communities needing to improve their systems.

“EPA has a systematic approach to determining which substances are regulated. Those regulations take into account occurrence data and health effects research and should reflect the
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