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New methods will provide customers with services needed to comply with anticipated EPA monitoring requirements
UL, a tester of water quality and safety, introduced testing methods to meet the monitoring requirements for 28 new contaminants proposed in the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) third Unregulated Contaminant Monitoring Regulation (UCMR 3).
Under the Safe Drinking Water Act, the EPA established the Unregulated Contaminant Monitoring program to identify contaminants that are suspected to occur in public water systems and may warrant regulation. In accordance with the program, the EPA selects a new list of contaminants every five years for testing to determine whether new regulations are needed to protect public health.
As proposed, UCMR 3 would require assessment monitoring for 28 contaminants and pre-screen testing for two viruses. Mandatory assessment monitoring for the 28 identified contaminants would be required for all public water systems serving more than 10,000 people along with 800 selected public water systems serving 10,000 or fewer people. Additionally, a representative sample of 800 public water systems serving 1,000 or fewer people would be required to conduct pre-screen testing for the identified viruses. The proposed rule does not address methods specific to virus monitoring.
“Like many testing methods required to comply with UCMR 1 and UCMR 2, proper analysis of the 28 contaminants identified in UCMR 3 called for the development of several new analytical procedures,” said Hank Lambert, general manager of UL Global Food and Water Businesses. “UL quickly adopted the necessary testing methods and we are proud to be one of the first laboratories that can provide customers across the country with the tools needed to comply with the anticipated UCMR 3 requirements.”
The EPA is expected to finalize UCMR 3 early next year following the necessary comment and review periods. In preparation, UL has begun the EPA’s laboratory approval process. Upon successful application and analysis of Performance Test samples, UL will obtain provisional approval, with final approval being issued upon approval of the final rule. UL previously obtained formal EPA approval for all methods required under UCMR 1 and UCMR 2 and anticipates similar approval for UCMR 3.
UL has analyzed more than 2 million drinking water samples for thousands of public and private entities, including the EPA. The company is currently certified in 49 states and Puerto Rico and ANSI accredited to certify water products. UL is also an approved certifier of water products that meet the criteria of the EPA’s WaterSenseSMprogram, which identifies and promotes the use of water-efficient products.