The Virginia Tech College of Engineering reported decreased lead levels in the water in Flint, Michigan. While this may seem encouraging, it does not mean the water crisis is over. Flint water still contains "an average lead reading...of 8.3 parts per billion" and we know that any level of lead is not safe.
Elected officials, and the public, should not be celebrating this improvement in water lead levels as the end to a long-established crisis. We need to make sure that all lead pipes in Flint and across the country are replaced, and we need a major federal investment in our public water infrastructure with money prioritized to struggling communities like Flint.
The Water Affordability, Transparency, Equity and Reliability (WATER) Act (HR 1673) is the most comprehensive approach to improving our water systems. This visionary piece of legislation will help address the water crisis in Flint and the water issues we face across the nation. It’s time to truly invest in our communities, address water infrastructure challenges, and ensure that every person has access to safe, clean and affordable water once and for all.