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First-In-The-Nation Perchlorate Standard

Organization(s) Massachusetts Dept. of Environmental Protection
Project Description Massachusetts became the first state in the nation to promulgate drinking water and waste site cleanup standards for perchlorate, setting the standard at 2 parts per billion (ppb). The new regulations require most public water systems to regularly test for perchlorate.

The new standards were adopted to protect public health, including sensitive populations, such as pregnant women, nursing mothers, infants, and individuals with low levels of thyroid hormones. Perchlorate has been found to interfere with thyroid function, which could lead to impaired human development and metabolism.

Perchlorate is a chemical that can be found in blasting agents, such as fireworks, military munitions, and other manufacturing processes, and can be generated in small amounts within existing water treatment processes. No federal standards regulating perchlorate levels in drinking water currently exist.

Besides the requirement for regular testing, the new regulations also require parties responsible for perchlorate contamination to notify MA DEP of the contamination and conduct appropriate environmental assessment and cleanup and for all drinking water supplies to contain no more than 2 ppb of perchlorate.

Since perchlorate was first detected in the aquifer under Bourne, MA in 2002, the chemical has been detected in 10 other public water systems across the state.

More Info mass.gov/dep/water/drinking/percinfo.htm
Project Contact
Name Edmund Coletta
Phone 617-292-5737
Project Keywords
Activity Keywords Policy/Legislative
Newsletter Northeast Assistance & Pollution Prevention News - Vol. 16 No. 2, Fall 2006 [PDF]


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Last Modified 09/08/2009

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