Students Celebrate 30th Anniversary of Safe Drinking Water Act
This anniversary is an opportunity for Americans to celebrate 30 years of safe drinking water. Most Americans take healthy drinking water for granted. Yet, there are many threats to drinking water supply including: improperly disposed of chemicals; animal wastes; pesticides; human wastes; and even naturally occurring substances.
The Safe Drinking Water Act originally focused primarily on treatment as a means of providing safe drinking water at the tap. Greater efforts are now underway to improve water quality at its source - rivers, lakes, reservoirs, springs, and ground water.
To protect water sources, local emergency responders include water safety in their planning. Townships throughout the region are working to reduce non-point source run-off that can carry sediment and pollutants into our rivers and streams. Citizen watershed organizations organize stream clean-ups and help to restore stream banks by adding plants that will reduce flooding and support healthier streams. We have a multi-state program to monitor the Delaware Estuary and there is a river keeper whose daily work is to look out for the
One of the drinking water sources where EPA has placed a renewed focus is the
The network is focusing on four key pro
The network has many partners including EPA, the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, the Philadelphia Water Department, the Delaware River Basin Commission, conservation districts, locally elected officials, and citizen watershed organizations.
Most people, if they think a
Test yourself with these questions:
Looking out for our watersheds and working together we can ensure that the Safe Drinking Water Act will
Here are the answers:
2. It is 130 miles long. The watershed includes 2,000 square miles of area and is home to the approximately three million people in
surface water intakes
4. Pathogens, such as Giardia and Cryptosporidium, are contained in sewage, livestock and wildlife wastes; nutrients from sewage, agriculture, lawncare, and golf courses; metals created by acid mine drainage; chloride and sodium from highways and road salt; MtBE (a gasoline additive) leaked from underground storage tanks and watercraft; and natural elements in the river such as bromide that can chemically react with other elements to create potentially cancer-causing compounds.
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