Clean Wisconsin issued the following statement after U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Andrew Wheeler announced a proposed update to the lead and copper rule on Thursday in Green Bay:

“It’s about time EPA take this crisis seriously by putting forth much needed updates to this rule, but the bottom line is that this proposed rule fails to protect public health,” said Carly Michiels, Government Relations Director at Clean Wisconsin. “The EPA has repeatedly said that there is no safe level of lead exposure, and yet actions today still allows for kids to drink water that contains unsafe levels of lead. Lead pollution is 100% preventable, and we need to remove all 192,000 lead service lines still providing drinking water across Wisconsin.”

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Facts about lead in drinking water:

  • There is no safe level of lead exposure.
  • In Wisconsin 6% of kids have tested positive for lead poisoning, higher than the national average.
  • Lead can have harmful impacts, with long-term consequences especially among children.
  • The DNR has estimated there are 192,000 lead service lines remaining across the state, at a total estimated cost of $2 billion to replace.