July 23, 2021

Manchin, Capito, McKinley Urge EPA To Address Lead Found in Clarksburg Drinking Water

Charleston, WV – Today, U.S. Senators Joe Manchin (D-WV) and Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV) and Representative David McKinley (R-WV) urged Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Michael Regan to address the elevated levels of lead found in the drinking water of homes served by the Clarksburg Water System. The letter can be read in full here.

The Members said in part, “We were concerned to learn of the elevated levels of lead in drinking water in certain homes in Clarksburg, West Virginia. Ensuring the safety of all of the citizens of West Virginia is of the upmost importance to us. We write to request immediate assistance from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in providing support for residents served by the Clarksburg Water System (“the System”) as the System works to comply with the Emergency Administrative Order (“Emergency Order”) issued by the Agency and the notice of violation issued by the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources (WVDHHR).”

The Clarksburg Water System serves approximately 18,000 residents via 8,500 service connections. Additionally, the System serves as a water supply for a number of other public water systems in the area, which service an additional 38,000 people.

The Members asked the EPA to take immediate measures and respond to questions:

1.     Exercise immediate authorities, such as those available to the Administrator under Section 1442(d) of the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA), to assist with emergencies involving public water systems by providing grants to the System. If authorities under this section have not been invoked, then what authority has EPA used to provide assistance?

2.     Collaborate with the State of West Virginia, including the WVDHHR, and the System to assist in complying with the Emergency Order, including efforts to coordinate sampling activities as well as provide general sampling assistance. If EPA is not presently working with the State and the System to provide sampling assistance, then how will EPA take action to provide support?

3.     Provide bottled water and point-of-use filters to impacted residents served by the System. If EPA has not assisted in obtaining bottled water and point-of-use filters for impacted residents, then what help has EPA provided thus far?

The letter can be read in full here.