April 01, 2020

In Defense of an Unpopular Drinking Water Rule

Eric L. Klein

Environmental laws do not have fans, at least not like rock stars have fans. There was no Beatlemania when the Clean Water Act was passed in 1972. There is no Beyhive surrounding CERCLA. And yet, those of us in the environmental law community do have our favorites… and no one ever, ever says that their favorite is the Lead and Copper Rule. This is the 1990s-era federal rule under the Safe Drinking Water Act responsible for minimizing the levels of a potent neurotoxin in our drinking water, applicable to virtually every public water system in every state. 40 C.F.R. § 141.80 et seq. And yet even among the people nerdish enough to have a favorite environmental law, the Lead and Copper Rule is very much unloved.

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