Industry called on to educate public, policymakers
The Water Quality Assn. (WQA) announced a major new initiative with backup materials to help the industry encourage final barrier systems.
“As a paradigm shift in the way people think about safe drinking water, understanding of final barrier will need to be promoted by everyone in our industry,” said Dave Haataja, executive director of WQA.
The new plan calls for association members to use specially designed informational materials to educate the public and key policymakers on why final barrier should be pursued.
Final barrier  is the plan to promote point-of-use/point-of-entry devices as a way to face emerging threats to drinking water, including infrastructure problems that many communities face.
WQA has developed a consumer-friendly brochure to help explain final barrier. In addition, a new Legislative Outreach Program will help association members approach and educate local legislators.
Members and WQA staff will be talking with federal legislators, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and organizations such as the American Water Works Assn. and the Association of State Drinking Water Administrators to spread the word. International efforts also will be made, such as product certification.
Development of new standards will be pursued, and the Water Quality Research Foundation will be deployed to make independent studies on final barrier. WQA will look for localities conducive to these systems that are willing to cooperate.
Final barrier is predicated on the fact that only 1% of all municipal water is consumed by humans. The other 99% flushes toilets, waters lawns and supports cleaning, commercial and industrial processes. Consumers can implement final barrier treatment in their homes or businesses.