Compliance Problems Undermine EPA's Drinking Water Program

T-RCED-90-97: Published: Aug 3, 1990. Publicly Released: Aug 3, 1990.

Additional Materials:

Contact:

Office of Public Affairs
(202) 512-4800
youngc1@gao.gov

GAO discussed the implementation of the Safe Drinking Water Act Program, focusing on: (1) the extent to which community water systems complied with monitoring requirements and met drinking water standards; (2) states' and the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) effectiveness in enforcing efforts to ensure compliance with those requirements; and (3) the impact of new drinking water requirements. GAO noted that: (1) many water systems, particularly smaller systems, were violating monitoring requirements for water quality and drinking water standards; (2) some violations were going undetected primarily due to sampling errors and deliberate falsification or manipulation of compliance data; (3) states' and EPA enforcement actions, intended to deter violations and return systems to compliance, often fell short of EPA program requirements and were frequently ineffective in achieving their objectives; (4) at the federal level, EPA lacked key data needed to determine water systems' compliance; (5) EPA did not fully implement programs that could improve compliance; (6) EPA enforcement efforts to deter noncompliance were inadequate; and (7) the implementation of new and more stringent regulatory requirements could make compliance and enforcement more difficult.

Mar 1, 2021

Jan 22, 2021

Jan 19, 2021

Jan 15, 2021

Jan 13, 2021

Jan 7, 2021

Dec 18, 2020

Dec 9, 2020

Looking for more? Browse all our products here