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Human Health Criteria for Microbes

The Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA) and the Clean Water Acts (CWA) address microbial contamination of the nation's waters. The CWA enables protection of surface water for drinking water, recreational, and aquatic food source uses. The SDWA enables regulation of contamination of finished drinking water and protection of source waters.

Programs under the two Acts have historically followed separate paths using differing indicators of contamination and differing approaches. Concerns about future increases in microbial contamination and potential for emergence of new threats create a need to consider a strategy for the future that unites the influence of the two programs. Objectives of the strategy are to address all important sources of contamination, anticipate emerging problems, and use program and research activities efficiently to protect public health.

You can access a variety of sound scientific assessments that are used to protect the public from exposure to harmful levels of pathogens in ground and surface waters, food sources, and finished drinking water.