U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Lisa Jackson has announced the agency’s decision to move forward with the development of a regulation for perchlorate to protect Americans from any potential health impacts, while also continuing to take steps to ensure the quality of the water they drink. The decision to undertake a first-ever national standard for perchlorate reverses a decision made by the previous administration, and comes after Administrator Jackson ordered EPA scientists to undertake a thorough review of the emerging science of perchlorate.
is both a naturally occurring and man-made chemical, and scientific research
indicates that it may impact the normal function of the thyroid, which produces
important developmental hormones. Thyroid hormones are critical to the normal
development and growth of fetuses, infants and children. Based on this
potential concern, EPA will move forward with proposing a formal rule. This
process will include receiving input from key stakeholders as well as
submitting any formal rule to a public comment process.
In a separate action, the agency also is moving towards establishing a drinking
water standard to address a group of up to 16 toxic chemicals that may pose
risks to human health. As part of the Drinking Water Strategy laid out by
Administrator Jackson in 2010, EPA committed to addressing contaminants as a
group rather than one at a time so that enhancement of drinking water
protection can be achieved cost-effectively.
“Clean water is critical to the health and prosperity of every American community
and a fundamental concern to every American family. EPA is hard at work on
innovative ways to improve protections for the water we drink and give to our
children, and the development of these improved standards is an important step
forward,” says EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson. “Our decisions are based on
extensive review of the best available science and the health needs of the
EPA to Develop Regulation for Perchlorate in Drinking Water
February 2, 2011