Lead and Copper in Drinking Water
Lead and copper are common metals found in the environment. Drinking water is one possible source of exposure to these metals due to their widespread use in distribution system materials. Lead can enter drinking water when pipes, solder, home/building interior plumbing, fittings and fixtures that contain lead corrode. Corrosion is the dissolving, or wearing away, of metal caused by a chemical reaction between water and distribution system materials. Several factors affect the amount of lead that enters drinking water including water quality characteristics, the amount of lead the water comes into contact with, and the frequency of water use in the home.
The purpose of the Lead and Copper Rule (LCR), is to control lead and copper levels by reducing water corrosivity. All community and nontransient noncommunity water supplies (types of public water supplies) must meet the LCR requirements.
- Information About Lead in Your Drinking Water
The United States Environmental Protection Agency estimates that drinking water can make up 20 percent or more of a person’s potential exposure to lead. Infants who consume mostly mixed formula can receive 40 percent to 60 percent of their exposure to lead from drinking water.
- LCR Compliance
All community and nontransient noncommunity water supplies are subject to Lead and Copper Rule (LCR) requirements. The LCR establishes action levels for lead and copper based on a 90th percentile level of tap samples. Water supplies must conduct tap monitoring and associated reporting to stay in compliance with the LCR. Click the link above for details regarding 2018 rule changes, reporting guidelines, forms, and templates.
Drinking Water in Schools
- School Drinking Water Program
All children need access to healthy water. Quality drinking water is critical to a child’s overall health, development and performance. Michigan children spend a significant portion of their day in school or child care facilities. The School Drinking Water Program provides school personnel with training, guidance, and tools on school water management practices, sampling plans, and risk reduction.
Drinking Water Councils
- Drinking Water Advisory Councils
Revisions to the LCR established the statewide Drinking Water Advisory Council, and individual Water System Advisory Councils to provide education about lead in drinking water to the state and local communities. The statewide council includes water industry professionals, public health professionals and members of the public. A local council must have five or more people, with at least one being a community resident.