If your drinking water is served by a public community water system, you should now be able to access your utility’s 2020 Annual Water Quality Report!
The Federal Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA) passed in 1974 to protect the United States’ drinking water supplies and their sources from naturally occurring and manmade contaminants. All public community water systems throughout the United States fall under the jurisdiction of the federal SDWA, with state agencies, like our NC Dept. of Environmental Quality, ensuring compliance through overseeing testing, monitoring, and issuing violations.
In 1996, the SDWA was amended to include the requirement that water systems must distribute an Annual Water Quality Report, also known as a Consumer Confidence Report (CCR).
Annual Water Quality Reports are crucial to the consumer for a variety of reasons. They can alert the consumer to health risks, help the consumer decide whether or not they will consume the water, and provide you with direct contact information for utility staff who can answer any questions consumers may have.
Public community water systems include publically owned and operated city, town, and county-wide utilities, as well as private investor-owned utilities.
Examples of public community water systems include:
- City of Durham Department of Water Management
- Northampton County Public Works
- Town of Siler City Water & Sewer
- Aqua North Carolina and Carolina Water Service drinking water systems
In North Carolina, reports are sent out by utilities around June or July each year. The reports must first outline what the source is (e.g. aquifer, lake, or river) as well as any contaminants in the water, the level and type of risk the contaminants may impose on the consumer, and possible health effects of consuming the water. The report must also contain information about treatment methods, educational materials for the consumer outlining common contaminants such as lead and arsenic, and contact information for the water system if the consumer has any questions.
Utilities distribute these reports in different ways, based on the size of their customer base, but the easiest way to access a copy of your water utility’s Annual Water Quality report is by contacting them directly!
<< Click the image to view an example Annual Water Quality Report in Spanish!
Clean Water for NC is also here to help – please contact Rachel Velez at email@example.com if you need assistance in English finding or understanding your utility’s report.
¡Hablamos español! Póngase en contacto con firstname.lastname@example.org si tiene alguna pregunta con respecto a su Informe de la Calidad del Agua. También podemos programar una reunión en su casa para ayudarlo mejor con cualquier pregunta sobre el agua potable que tenga.
CWFNC Report: Do NC Water Utilities Habla Espanol?
CWFNC Community Tools: Drinking Water Watch Fact Sheet
NC Dept. of Environmental Quality contact for further questions on your utility’s Annual Water Quality Report: Bethany.Goodwin@ncdenr.gov