Only one percent
of the earth's water is drinkable and local governments are often
stewards of public drinking water supplies. Given their
responsibility for protecting public health and the environment,
local governments are required under the Safe
Drinking Water Act (SDWA) to meet the federal drinking
water standards and to develop the plans and programs to protect
sources of drinking water. An essential step in a community's source
water protection program is a source water assessment, which includes
the delineation of the area to be protected and an inventory of the
potential contaminants within that area. Developing a drinking or
source water protection program allows local governments to act
positively to protect public health rather than simply react after a
costly problem occurs, i.e., contaminated drinking water supplies.
Office of Ground Water and Drinking Water (OGWDW).
OGWDW together with states, tribes, and its many partners, protects
public health by ensuring safe drinking water and protecting ground
water. OGWDW, along with EPA's ten regional drinking water programs,
oversees implementation of the Safe Drinking Water Act, which is the
national law safeguarding tap water in America.
Water Standards. Under the authority of the Safe
Drinking Water Act (SDWA), EPA sets standards for approximately 90
contaminants in drinking water. For each of these contaminants, EPA
sets a legal limit, called a maximum contaminant level, or requires a
certain treatment. Water suppliers may not provide water that doesn't
meet these standards.
Public Drinking Water Systems Programs. Through the Public Water System Supervision (PWSS) program, EPA implements and enforces drinking water standards to protect public health.
Drinking Water Information. Click on a state to
locate state program information and access drinking water supply
Water Works Association. Founded in 1881, AWWA is the
authoritative resource on safe water, providing knowledge,
information and advocacy to improve the quality and supply of water
in North America and beyond.
of Metropolitan Water Agencies. The Association of
Metropolitan Water Agencies (AMWA) is an organization of the largest
publicly owned drinking water systems in the United States. AMWA's
membership serves more than 130 million Americans with drinking water
from Alaska to Puerto Rico.
of State Drinking Water Administrators. The
Association of State Drinking Water Administrators (ASDWA) is the
professional Association serving state drinking water programs.
Formed in 1984 to address a growing need for state administrators to
have national representation, ASDWA has become a respected voice for
state primacy agents with Congress, the United States Environmental
Protection Agency (EPA), and other professional organizations.
of State Drinking Water Administrators. ASDWA has
developed a number of publications, which are listed on this page.
Some publications are available online for download, while others
must be purchased from ASDWA Headquarters.
Drinking Water State Revolving Fund. EPA awards grants to states to establish revolving loan funds to assist public water systems with infrastructure improvements. The program also allows states to reserve a portion of their grant to fund activities needed for source water protection and enhanced water systems management.