EPA Drafts Rule to Address Drugs in Water Supply

Date: August 15, 2008

Source: News Room

The EPA has completed a draft rule that would reclassify pharmaceuticals as "universal waste," a move it hopes will encourage the development of more take back programs, which in turn, should reduce water contamination. Under current Resource Conservation & Recovery Act (RCRA) regulations, many chemicals found in pharmaceuticals are subject to hazardous waste rules that set strict waste handling, record-keeping and personnel training requirements and demand drugs be incinerated. RCRA rules along with Drug Enforcement Administration rules on handling "controlled substances" and health insurance privacy requirements have so far hindered community take-back and recycling programs as an alternative to disposing of drugs in landfills or wastewater systems. Michigan and Florida have adopted similar rules to achieve the same ends.

To learn more, visit the US Environmental Protection Agency: www.epa.gov.

Sign up to receive our free Weekly News Bulletin