OLYMPIA, Wash. - For the first time in decades, the Environmental Protection Agency is rolling out a new plan to reduce the risk of lead exposure.
On Thursday, the EPA unveiled a plan to overhaul how communities test for lead.
The proposal includes being transparent about toxicity findings, pinpointing where problems are, and replacing existing lead lines.
“The end result is we want to make sure kids aren’t subjected to high levels of lead in their drinking water,” said Chris Hladick, EPA Region 10 administrator.
“We’ve learned from Flint, Michigan and really some of the other mistakes that were made there and move forward and make sure we have a methodical way to deal with this.”
Lauren Jenks is with the Washington State Department of Health. She said lead can have a big impact on a child’s brain development.
“Providing an environment for kids that has as little lead as possible is really important to help children develop to their fullest potential,” said Jenks.
The DOH is working with schools across the state to make sure kids are drinking clean, lead-free water.
Jenks said the biggest risk is often at home, where children can be exposed to lead in water, paint, and dirt.
This is the first major overhaul of the Lead and Copper Rule since 1991.
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