Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

We Need Better Answers about Pwsa Lead Testing

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

We Need Better Answers about Pwsa Lead Testing

Article excerpt

The Post-Gazette reports in "Pittsburgh Water-Sewer Authority Using New Lead-Fighting Chemical" (Jan. 22) that the level of lead in our city drinking water has risen seven-fold in the last 15 years, according to the most recent U.S. Environmental Protection Agency-mandated tests from 2013-14.

Only a few weeks ago, and just in time for the next round of mandated testing, the Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority began adding a new chemical intended to make the water less likely to leach lead from old pipes. This raises some questions:

(1) Given the rapid rise in lead levels over the last few years, and the previous test results of 14.7 ppb, just 0.3 ppb shy of the EPA action level of 15 ppb, why has it taken nearly three years for the PWSA to take any action? This question demands an answer from PWSA management that does not involve second-guessing the EPA's recommendations or downplaying the risks of exposure to even low levels of lead. …

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