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Water: Safe Drinking Water Act

Current Drinking Water Regulations

Under the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA), EPA sets legal limits on the levels of certain contaminants in drinking water. The legal limits reflect both the level that protects human health and the level that water systems can achieve using the best available technology. Besides prescribing these legal limits, EPA rules set water-testing schedules and methods that water systems must follow. The rules also list acceptable techniques for treating contaminated water. SDWA gives individual states the opportunity to set and enforce their own drinking water standards if the standards are at least as strong as EPA's national standards. Most states and territories directly oversee the water systems within their borders.

Where can I find information about chemical contaminants that EPA regulates?

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Where can I find information about how EPA regulates the treatment of microbial contaminants in drinking water sources?

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Where can I find information about unregulated contaminants?

EPA uses the Unregulated Contaminant Monitoring (UCM) program to collect data for contaminants suspected to be present in drinking water, but that do not have health-based standards set under the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA). Every five years EPA reviews the list of contaminants, largely based on the Contaminant Candidate List

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More information about contaminants of interest:

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