Drinking water quality is an important public health issue because contamination in a single system can expose many people at once. Contaminated water can be a threat to anyone's health, but especially to young children.
About half of our nation's drinking water comes from ground water. Most is supplied through community water systems. But many families rely on private, household wells and use ground water as their source of fresh water.
Drinking water protection programs at the state and national levels play a critical role in ensuring high quality drinking water and in protecting the public's health.
About 90% of people in the United States get their water from a community water system. These public water systems are required to provide drinking water that meets standards established under the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA). EPA establishes drinking water standards for individual contaminants and groups of contaminants.