This would be the nation’s first drinking water standard for 1,4-dioxane.
New York has adopted aggressive drinking water standards in the U.S. for emerging contaminants, including 1,4-Dioxane and PFOAs.
Water districts will now have to test often for the chemicals and remove the contaminants if they exceed the new limits, reported WSHU Public Radio.
The maximum contaminant level is 1 part per billion for 1,4-Dioxane and the maximum contaminant levels for emerging contaminants PFOA and PFOS in New York's drinking water are at 10 parts per trillion, according to Governor Cuomo in a press release.
"While the federal government continues to leave emerging contaminants like 1,4-Dioxane, PFOA and PFOS unregulated, New York is leading the way by setting new national standards that help ensure drinking water quality and safeguard New Yorker's health from these chemicals," said New York Gov. Cuomo. "The environmental movement was founded in this great state and we will continue to move forward to protect our most precious resources for generations to come."
Following the Public Health and Health Planning Council (PHHPC) approval, and once approved by the Commissioner of Health, the final regulations will be published in the State Register, added the press release. Systems serving 10,000 people or more will be required to begin testing within 60 days. For systems serving between 3,300 to 9,999 people, within 90 days, and within six months for systems serving less than 3,300 people.
According to Adrienne Esposito, executive director of Citizens Campaign for the Environment, the drinking water on Long Island is some of most contaminated water in the state. Filtration systems to remove the chemicals can be costly, and the state has already provided over $140 million to Long Island water districts.
“We have five different spots just in Suffolk County alone where the community is not allowed to drink their water because of high levels of PFOA and PFOS," said Esposito. "So these standards really have a lot of meaning and a lot of protection mechanisms for the Long Island residents.”