DoE revises cost estimates for new drinking water rules

Revised estimates of the costs of an EC proposal to amend the 1980 Directive on drinking water quality have been submitted to Parliament by the Department of the Environment (DoE). Spending on removing lead pipes still dominates the total, but significant expenditure may also be incurred in controlling disinfection by-products - although this may be offset if water companies are not forced to replace tar-lined pipes. Other figures released by the DoE show that companies replaced only about 5% of their lead pipes over a four-year period - and a sharp acceleration may be needed to comply with the new Directive.

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