Michigan’s New Lead and Copper Rule is Now in Effect

Following much debate and public input, Michigan’s new lead pipe regulation is strictest in the nation.

Michigan’s New Lead and Copper Rule (LCR) has been filed with the State’s Office of the Great Seal, putting it into effect immediately. The Rule is under the authority of the Michigan Safe Drinking Water Act. With this new LCR, Michigan now has the toughest protections in the United States against lead in drinking water. Lead is a known neurotoxin and can lead to significant and irreversible mental development effects on human health, especially in children.

The new LCR affects Michigan community water supplies by requiring water system owners and managers to provide full inventories of water service line materials, to be transparent in communicating the quantity and location of all lead service lines, and to remove all lead service lines by 2041.

Below is a brief summary of significant changes addressed with the new rule:

  • Lower Lead Action Level by 2025
    • The Action Level for lead in drinking water will be lowered from the current level of 15 Parts per Billion (PPB) to 12 PPB on January 1, 2025.
    • Lead sampling involves the first Liter draw and the fifth Liter.
  • Community water supplies are now responsible for lead service lines from the main to the building/house.
    • Preliminary service line material inventories are due to the MDEQ by January 1, 2020.
    • By January 1, 2021, communities that have lead service lines must begin replacing them to ensure all lead service lines are removed by January 1, 2041.
    • Partial lead service line replacements are banned.
    • Verified service line material inventories are due to the MDEQ by January 1, 2025.
  • Communication
    • Notices must be sent to residents that are known to have lead services lines to their homes.
    • Service line inventories are to be published in Consumer Confidence Reports.

If you have questions about Michigan’s new LCR and how it affects your community water supply, please contact Dan Sorek, PE at 616–364–8491 or by email.

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