MEC statement on proposed Lead and Copper Rule reforms

Michigan Environmental Council President Chris Kolb issued the following statement in response to reforms to Michigan's implementation of the federal Lead and Copper Rule proposed today by Gov. Rick Snyder:

"The reforms proposed today are an important first step in what needs to be a major, multi-pronged effort to protect Michigan children by ridding our communities of lead hazards. Governor Snyder has put forth a strong plan for addressing the lead risk in water, and we look forward to working with him and legislative leaders to ensure the proposed programs and policies are adequately funded, swiftly implemented and strongly enforced.

"The proposed action level for lead in drinking water would make Michigan the national leader. We should be in protecting residents' health. Ultimately, our goal must be to eliminate lead from drinking water entirely, but we recognize it will take time and resources to get there.

"Additionally, drinking water is not the only way Michigan residents are exposed to lead. The reforms announced today must be part of a broader effort to eliminate lead hazards in homes, in soil and other sources that put our children at risk. This effort will require a commitment of state resources, but these investments will more than pay for themselves in long-term savings for Michigan taxpayers. For example, research has shown that cleaning up lead from the state's most at-risk homes would pay for itself in three years by reducing the costs of health care, crime, special education and lost earning potential, and every dollar invested would return $10.50 after thirty years."

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