Revised Total Coliform Rule - a Utility Briefing
(NEW YORK, NY – August 30, 2010) – The Total Coliform Rule (TCR) was first published in June 1989 by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and became effective in 1990. The purpose of the 1989 TCR was to improve public health protection by reducing fecal pathogens to minimal levels through control of total coliform bacteria, including fecal coliforms and Escherichia coli (E. coli).
In 2003, the EPA completed its review of the TCR and 68 National Primary Drinking Water Regulations (NPDWRs) for chemicals and announced its intent to revise the TCR. The EPA is now proposing revisions to the 1989 TCR and anticipates greater public health protection under the proposed regulations. Revisions to the TCR are based on recommendations by a federal advisory committee and will require public water systems that are vulnerable to microbial contamination to identify and fix problems and establish criteria for systems to qualify for and stay on reduced monitoring, thereby providing incentives for improved water system operation.
As with the current Total Coliform Rule, the proposed Revised Total Coliform Rule applies to all public water systems and will impact approximately 154,000 public water systems serving approximately 307 million individuals. For the full briefing, click here.