Water Well Journal

July 2015

Water Well Journal

Issue link: http://read.dmtmag.com/i/529509

Contents of this Issue


Page 11 of 83

Pending California Lawsuit Hears Oral Arguments T he legal battle over California's reg- ulation of lead, a known carcinogen and neurotoxin, entered the next phase last month. The State of California filed a motion for judgment on the pleadings, arguing the complaint is untimely. Oral argu- ments on the motion were scheduled for June 11. Earlier, the California Chamber of Commerce and California Farm Bu- reau Federation filed a Motion to Inter- vene on April 8 that was granted. As reported in the National Ground Water Association's member e-publica- tion, NGWA Newszine on April 3, a vet- eran for-profit legal enforcement group sued the California Office of Environ- mental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) in early January, seeking to invalidate the existing "safe harbor" for lead exposure. The Mateel Environmental Justice Foundation asserts the existing safe har- bor is too lenient and should be elimi- nated. A ruling in Mateel's favor could have sweeping effects for businesses operat- ing in California and businesses that serve California's large market for con- sumer products. Thousands of manufac- turers, processors, distributors, retailers—and yes, businesses that work with California's public water supply— regularly rely on the safe harbor for lead exposure in daily operations. Lead is one of the most frequently referenced chemicals in Proposition 65 intent-to-sue letters. By one count, 412 of the 1394 Proposition 65 notice letters issued last year involved lead exposure or exposure to lead compounds. It is no surprise, then, the California Chamber of Commerce and a large coalition of businesses and trade associ- ations have already formally called on OEHHA to "vigorously defend itself" against the lawsuit. If Mateel prevails, businesses operat- ing in California could be subject to a sudden and unprecedented influx of lawsuits from plaintiff enforcement groups like Mateel. Businesses could be forced to issue costly and extensive warnings or be subject to heavy fines if using products containing even a trace amount of lead. Businesses working with California's water supply would also need to com- pletely eliminate traces of lead and lead compounds before discharging water. The lawsuit involves California's Proposition 65, which was created in 1986 through a voter initiative. Proposi- tion 65 echoed growing concern among the California electorate over the harm- ful effects of exposure to toxic chemi- cals. At the time, Proposition 65 called for the nation's (and the world's) most- stringent regulation of toxic chemicals in consumer products and drinking water. Proposition 65 became the Drink- ing Water and Toxic Enforcement Act of 1986. The act requires OEHHA to regularly update and publish a list of toxic chemi- cals. OEHHA lists chemicals scientifi- cally proven to cause cancer or birth defects or other reproductive harm and the allowable concentrations of the chemicals in California. To date, Industry NEWSLINE NEWS continues on page 12 10 July 2015 WWJ waterwelljournal.com the DR can drill without fluids the DR can drill without fluids el, glacial till, and boulder v a gra e bee v t DR drills ha emos or F w er in lo er in lo t a t w t w ec ec t o de o de y t y t s the abilit s, the abilit es the li thod minimiz he DR me s. T r edly in some of th t epea en r v o en pro ed ed. v o tions is impr tions is impro orma orma w f w f -flo flo w tion and aqu cula s circ elihood of los k erb v ed o t onsolida t unc oughes he t tion. Because tamina on s-c os er cro uif tions, including sand orma den f bur e d, o drill. Canada ( 1.9190 .66 1.800 or call fo , visit e o learn mor To y t a er w t t be ti oduc o the pro tributions t on c s Dual ' t emos or , F 9 7 e 19 Sinc s orldwide (W 5.5800 3.29 1.40 .S.A.) a/U DR ca/ t. emos or or t a y of opera ofitabilit y and pr ivit ed on the ere e deliv v otary drills ha R y , wing numbe Eng DE ) de o or a gro . F orldwide w . e ormanc er perf t t omise of be e pro p s simply no try e indus c esour or the r ed solutions f ineer ESIGN. BUILD. PERFORM. e' ther s, or t ac tra on er of c e significan o make tinue t on y c he T o . y . t

Articles in this issue

Links on this page

Archives of this issue

view archives of Water Well Journal - July 2015