WQA celebrates introduction of Healthy H2O Act
Legislation grew from an association volunteer task force initiative
LISLE, Ill. (April 29, 2022) – The Water Quality Association welcomes the introduction of federal legislation that would offer federal grants for water testing and certified treatment technology in rural and underserved communities, a proposal that grew from an initiative developed by a WQA task force. U.S. Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), introduced the Healthy Drinking Water Affordability Act, also known as the Healthy H2O Act, in Congress on April 26.
“We applaud Sen. Baldwin for introducing The Healthy H2O Act to get effective water treatment technology directly to the people who need it most,” said WQA Executive Director Pauli Undesser, MWS, CAE. “Point-of-use and point-of-entry filtration can be especially helpful to rural areas whose households rely primarily on private wells, might need help dealing with existing and newly discovered health contaminants in their communities, and have often been overlooked by recent federal investments.”
The bill would “cut costs and expand access to water testing and treatment for families in rural communities so that when we turn on the faucet, we can be confident our drinking water is safe,” Baldwin said in an April 26 news release.
The act authorizes a new grant program at the United States Department of Agriculture that would cover costs of water quality testing and the purchase, installation and maintenance of POU/POE water filtration systems certified by an ANSI-accredited body. Funding would go directly to individuals, non-profits and local governments.
The bill, originally known as the “Clean Water for All” initiative, was developed by a WQA task force. Task Force Chair Josh Greene of A.O. Smith worked with Baldwin’s staff to secure her sponsorship and help draft the bill.
"It's so exciting to see the Task Force's hard work reflected in legislation that will address a critical gap in federal drinking water policy," Greene said. "The grants authorized by the Healthy H2O Act could empower millions of Americans who rely on private wells to test their drinking water and find affordable, third-party certified water filtration solutions that are proven to greatly reduce or eliminate drinking water health contaminants, affording families peace of mind."
Representatives from the National Ground Water Association, The Water Council, NSF International, IAPMO, the American Supply Association, the Water Systems Council, the Water Well Trust and the Groundwater Foundation also support the Healthy H2O bill.
More information on the bill, including the full text of the legislation and a one-page explainer sheet, is available at wqa.org/healthyh2O.
WQA is a not-for-profit trade association representing the residential, commercial, and industrial water treatment industry. WQA’s education and professional certification programs have been providing industry-standardized training and credentialing since 1977. The WQA Gold Seal certification program has been certifying products that contribute to the safe consumption of water since 1959. The WQA Gold Seal program is accredited by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) and the Standards Council of Canada (SCC). WQA publishes a consumer-friendly website, BetterWaterToday.org.
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