Coalition Calls for California to Cut Limit of Lead Leaching From Plumbing Fixtures

The proposed bill would limit the amount of lead from taps and fixtures to no more than 1 microgram.

A bill that would cut by more than half the legal limit for lead leaching from plumbing fixtures for sale in California is pending.

According to The Press-Enterprise, Councilor Chris Holden partnered with a coalition of community health experts on Aug. 26 to gain support for this proposed law. The proposed bill would limit the amount of lead from taps and fixtures to no more than 1 microgram.

Alice Kuo, a professor of internal medicine and pediatrics at UCLA, joined in these efforts with Holden and members of the California Public Interest Research Group (CALPIRG), Clean Water Action, the Environmental Working Group and the Western Center on Law and Poverty.

“Thanks to Assembly Bill 2370, which I wrote in 2019, California began testing water fountains and faucets in schools and nurseries to check for lead,” Holden said, The Press-Enterprise reported. “Unfortunately, water taps and fixtures that are now being introduced and marketed still lead into the water. This is unacceptable.”

Holden’s 2018 bill, AB 2370, requires childcare centers to test their drinking water for lead and lower those levels if lead is found. according to CALPIRG. The state will spend $5 million of its own funds to pay for childcare centers’ lead testing, so if approved, AB will help 100 centers achieve the state’s goal of removing all lead from the centers’ drinking water. .

The state legislature also passed Assembly Act 746 in 2017, which mandated sampling and testing of lead in public school tap water. A similar bill was held up in 2020 by the Senate Appropriations Committee, CALPIRG reported.

Holden hopes Assembly Bill 100 will be linked with previous legislation to ban faucets and other fixtures that are still allowed to leach large amounts of lead.

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