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DEFRA Opens Consultation on New Drinking Water Regulations

February 3, 2016

Stakeholders have until 14th March to comment on DEFRA’s plans to replace the Water Supply (Water Quality) Regulations 2000 (as amended) and the Private Water Supplies Regulations 2009 (as amended), which currently provide the legal framework for public and private drinking water quality in England.

The proposed new legislation is intended to include the requirements of the Euratom Directive (Council Directive 2013/51/Euratom of 22 October 2013) which provides for more efficient monitoring for radioactive substances, in particular radon. It is hoped draft regulations, which will also consolidate the content from existing legislation in an attempt to improve understanding, will be laid before parliament in the spring/summer of this year.

The major changes being considered are:

  • The application of new monitoring requirements for radioactive substances as laid down in Directive 2013/51/EURATOM.
  • The reduction of the waiting time relating to the use of new sources of water and a clarification of requirements relating to data storage for public water supplies.
  • Bringing new private water supplies into the monitoring regime.
  • Additional wording and numbering changes to improve clarity in respect of changes brought about by the Drinking Water Directive (Council Directive 98/83/EC).

The consultation documents and the online survey are available HERE and cover both the proposed Water Supply (Water Quality) Regulations 2016 and the Private Water Supplies (England) Regulations 2016.

If you have any queries about the draft drinking water regulations, you can contact: drinkingwaterquality@defra.gsi.gov.uk