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Premature Regulation by Litigation
EPA’s preliminary decision not to set a drinking water standard for perchlorate is likely to trigger legal action. Earthjustice, a non-profit public interest law firm, announced that they plan to challenge EPA’s final decision in court acting as counsel for "the Environmental Working Group and other organizations...."

Earthjustice stated that they "will fight in court to make sure this toxin is regulated under the Safe Drinking Water Act." EPA explained that " based on the Safe Water Drinking Act criteria, the agency determined there is not a ‘meaningful opportunity for health risk reduction’ through a national drinking water regulation."

Any legal action by Earthjustice against EPA’s final decision, however, would be premature unless and until they file a Request for Correction under the Data Quality Act of specific information in the perchlorate regulatory determination that does not comply with agency and OMB information quality requirements – including compliance with the SDWA quality standards. In the DQA, Congress established an administrative mechanism for affected parties to "seek and obtain" correction of agency information not meeting quality standards for the objectivity, utility and integrity of data disseminated by agencies. Earthjustice will need to exhaust their administrative remedies prior to any litigation.

Earthjustice noted that "if limits for perchlorate in drinking water were set, the Defense Department and defense contractors could be found responsible for cleanups triggered by violations of the Safe Drinking Water Act." It seems that EPA’s "final" regulatory determination will be far from final, one way or another.

See Earthjustice Press Release

See DataQualityAct.US website

See CRE Regulation by Litigation website

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