*Written by Rose Afandi.
It is almost that time of the year again when all community water systems across the country are required to communicate the quality of their drinking water to their consumers through the publication of their annual consumer confidence report (CCR). Federal guidelines suggest that these reports should be made available to the public by July 1st each year, as they are an important tool for public communication and involvement. For some systems, the CCR provides an opportunity to showcase the work accomplished over the past year, ranging from developments and improvements at the water utility to reporting on good water quality results. For other systems, the CCR can be an undesirable disclosure of ‘not so good’ drinking water quality results and even incurred drinking water violations. Regardless of the situation, consumers have a right to know crucial information about their drinking water and any issues associated with it. Similar to food labels on food packaging at the grocery store, CCRs ensure that the public is well informed of what they are consuming. Each tap water user needs an assurance that they are consuming a clean and safe product. An informed public is always key to promoting confidence with water utilities. To learn more about CCRs visit the EPA website.