iStockphoto Up to about 10 million American homes still receive their tap water via lead pipes.
The American authorities announced on Thursday that they wanted to replace all lead pipes in the country within 10 years, in order to protect the population from any water contamination, which is dangerous for the health of children in particular.
President Joe Biden's administration had already set a goal of removing all these pipes, but the new regulatory proposal from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) this time sets a binding horizon.
In 2014, lead-contaminated water in the city of Flint constituted one of the worst health scandals in recent years in the United States.
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Up to approximately 10 million American homes still receive their tap water via plastic pipes lead. African Americans and other minorities, as well as low-income people, are disproportionately affected, often living in older homes.
“President Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris believe everyone should be able to turn on the tap and know that the glass of water they pour themselves is safe to drink,” Brenda Mallory said in a statement. environmental manager at the White House.
In 2021, Joe Biden's major infrastructure modernization plan included $15 billion in funding to replace lead pipes and develop a national inventory of these pipes.
No level of lead exposure is completely safe, experts say. It can seriously affect the physical and mental development of children. In adults, it can cause hypertension, heart and kidney problems and cancer.
This new regulation, which must be subject to a mandatory period of public debate before being definitively adopted, “is an essential response to a health crisis that has been going on for more than a century,” reacted Suzanne Novak, lawyer for the environmental association Earthjustice, in a press release.