Like most water utilities across the country, Mississippi water professionals have getting the lead out of drinking water and maintaining compliance at the top of the their minds. But, the recently issued Lead and Copper Rule Revisions (LCRR) announced by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) are a lot to unpack. And for water systems already working with limited resources, complying with the requirements may feel impossible.
Under LCRR, all community and nontransient non-community public water systems are required by the EPA to develop a Lead Service Line Inventory (LSLI) of all service lines, which includes the public and private sides of the line.
Recently, the Mississippi State Department of Health (MSDOH) shared guidance with water professionals about their inventories and what the state will expect in terms of reporting. Read on for important information about building your LSLI in Missisisippi, where to get training and resources, and where to apply for project funding.
How lead impacts the people of Mississippi
Lead poses serious potential health risks to Mississippians — particulary children — as the physical and behavioral effects of lead occur at lower exposure levels in children than adults.
For Mississippi specifically, any home built before 1990 could potentially have lead service lines on the customer’s property that connect to your water system’s main lines.
Potential sources of lead include:
- Copper pipe with lead solder: Solder made or installed before 1986 contained high lead levels.
- Faucets: Fixtures inside the home may contain lead.
- Galvanized pipe: Lead particles can attach to the surface of galvanized pipes.
- Lead goosenecks: Goosenecks and pigtails are shorter pipes that connect the lead service line to the main.
- Lead Service Line: A lead-containing pipe that runs from the water main to the home’s internal plumbing.
Learn what counts as a lead service line >
Building your Lead Service Line Inventory (LSLI)
The guidance provided by the MSDOH states that all Mississippi water systems must submit their inventory to the Bureau of Public Water Supply (BPWS) no later than December 31, 2023. Preparing the inventory will allow you to assess your LSLs, identify sampling locations, start your plans for Lead Service Line Removal (LSLR), and secure funding for the project.
The Mississippi BPWS will be providing training and guidance for LSLI later this year, but that doesn’t mean work is on hold. Now is the time for water systems to collect the information and historical sources needed to complete the required inventory.
The BPWS recommends utilizing the following sources to build your LSLI:
- Construction/plumbing codes, permits, and existing records that indicate the service line materials used to connect structures to the distribution system.
- Water system records such as distribution system maps/drawings, historical records on service connections, meter installation records, historical capital improvement or master plans, and standard operating procedures.
- Inspections and records of the distribution system that indicate the material composition of the service connections that connect a structure to the distribution system.
Every service line in your water system must be included in the inventory, whether it is in service or not. LSLIs must document the materials present and the approximate age of components on both the private and public sides of the system. (You can classify some service lines or segments as “unknown,” but they will be counted as LSLs until verified they are non-lead, per LCRR.)
Within the LSLI, you must identify all commercial, industrial, public, or residential building types connected to a service line. LCRR also requires you to prioritize sampling at residential sites with LSLs or galvanized lines. Inventories must also be updated annually or triennially, depending on the sample schedule.
Learn how predictive modeling can help you identify LSLs >
Where to find information and funding assistance
Recent federal legislation includes a $55 billion investment in clean drinking water — the largest in American history. The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law contains dedicated funding through the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund (DWSRF) for the inventory and replacement of lead service lines.
As the Mississippi DWSRF prepares for this funding, the BPWS will be working closely with water systems to rapidly complete LSLIs. Funding and technical assistance will be made available to help you develop your inventory and begin your LSLR planning.
Visit the Mississippi State Department of Health’s website to learn more about state-controlled programs and funding availability through the DWSRSF. For more information on LCRR, visit the EPA’s website.
Get help from 120Water’s LSLI experts
120Water is currently supporting systems across the country as they inventory over 3 million service lines. If you’d like to learn more about how to can support your inventory development, schedule a complimentary 30-minute planning sessions to help to assess your LCRR readiness below. Our experts will share strategies and offer solutions to help you build your LSLI and get the lead out of Mississippi drinking water.
Interested in how 120Water can help you meet state LCRR guidance in Mississippi? Schedule time with one of our experts so we can learn how our solution may be able to meet your needs.