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Drinking Water Workgroup

hand holding glass of water

Drinking Water Workgroup

Mission:

 

To identify and quantify public exposure to PFAS compounds in public drinking water supplies.

 

The Drinking Water Workgroup advises statewide drinking water sampling efforts for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), for both private and public water supplies, and works alongside other MPART technical workgroups to address additional topics including treatment, health and human safety, groundwater, surface water, laboratory standards, and food safety.  

Contact

Ian Smith
Emerging Contaminants Unit Manager

Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE)

The workgroup is made up of permanent members from Michigan Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE), the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (MDARD), the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS), and the Michigan Department of Military and Veterans Affairs (DMVA). Workgroup projects often involve active collaboration with additional interested parties, including our local public health partners and other Michigan PFAS Action Response Team (MPART) member agencies. This multi-agency collaboration has played a vital role in developing educational materials, sampling protocols, response recommendations, and communication strategies related to MPART's drinking water-related initiatives.

Recent Accomplishments

  • Performed ongoing PFAS monitoring at public water supply surface water intakes across Michigan in 2021.
  • Collaborated with MPART partner agencies to integrate 2018 - 2021 statewide PFAS survey data in an online public-facing PFAS mapping application for Michigan's residents to access, which went live in December 2021.

Next Steps

  • Continue MPART-led efforts to prioritize the locations of all public water supplies with PFAS detections approaching MCLs, in order to guide further sampling/investigatory work by member agencies around those locations.
  • The Drinking Water Workgroup will continue working with our local public health partners, MDHHS, and the MPART Laboratory Standards Workgroup to develop standard procedures  for communicating analytical residential well PFAS results. 

Research/Studies

  • The largest study overseen by the workgroup is the ongoing Statewide PFAS Survey for Public Water Supplies. The purpose of this work is to serve the established mission of the workgroup, which is to: "Identify and quantify public exposure to PFAS compounds in public drinking water supplies."
  • Targeted sampling and monitoring initiatives are conducted with the goal of collecting and better understanding specific information, such as:
    • What is the seasonable variability of PFAS in groundwater? or
    • Has historical PFAS use in the area led to contamination of one or more individual source wells? or
    • Are public water supplies which utilize surface water as a source at a greater risk to seasonal variability in PFAS levels?

Timeline of Accomplishments

  • April 2018 - Began Statewide PFAS Survey for Public Water Supplies (ongoing)
  • June 2018 - Developed sampling guidance for private residential well PFAS sampling
  • January 2019 - Completed the first phase of the Statewide Survey, which sampled Community Water Supplies, as well as schools and childcare providers on their own well
  • March 2019 - Began PFAS monitoring of public water supplies with PFAS detections of at least 10 ppt, and public water supplies utilizing a surface water source (ongoing)
  • April 2019 - Began work with the EGLE DWEHD on PFAS MCL rule promulgation
  • December 2019 - Completed statewide survey of additional noncommunity water supplies serving sensitive populations
  • Assisted with EGLE's rule promulgation efforts to establish Maximum Contaminant Limits (MCL) for seven PFAS compounds in August 2020.
  • August 2020 - Began coordinating the collection and sharing of PFAS compliance monitoring data, following the promulgation of Michigan's MCLs (ongoing) of 2,700 public water supplies.  This data is shared with the public through the MPART website results portal.