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From inventories to public education, here's how local leaders can take action on lead
An estimated 6 million leaded service lines(link is external) deliver drinking water to households across the United States, and when these lines leach lead into drinking water, it poses a serious public health problem. In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, states and cities are working to issue moratoriums on water shutoffs and reconnect service to those that have been shut off—but it’s important to recognize that running water doesn’t necessarily mean clean water.
The Center for Neighborhood Technology (CNT) and Metropolitan Planning Council(link is external) (MPC) teamed up to apply lead service line inventory and planning practices in two suburbs south of Chicago—Flossmoor and Hazel Crest—to better understand the challenges and opportunities. Here are some steps any community can take.
Over the past several years, in large part prompted by the public health crisis in Flint, MI, caused by lead in drinking water, states and communities have been outlining policies and practices to get the lead out of drinking water supplies. While the focus in this current moment is to ensure that our communities come out on the other side of COVID-19 as unscathed as possible, there is a huge opportunity to ensure that stimulus and recovery dollars are invested in improving how systems work for people, including making infrastructure safer for renters and owners.
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