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waterloop #128: Inside Illinois' Lead Legislation (A Pass The Mic Episode)

Illinois is the state with the most lead service lines for drinking water in the country, estimated to be between 700,000 and 1.4 million, with a large number of those found in Chicago. But in 2021, the efforts of a diverse coalition of stakeholders led to passage of landmark legislation that made Illinois one of only two states to require replacement of all lead service lines. An inside look at the Illinois legislation is provided in this Pass The Mic episode, which is guest hosted by Jeremy Orr, an environmental attorney specializing in Safe Drinking Water Act enforcement who previously worked at the Natural Resources Defense Council and now is at Earthjustice. Jeremy talks with Justin Williams of the Metropolitan Planning Council in Chicago about the problem of lead service lines, the disproportionate impact on communities of color, the extensive work it took to pass legislation, and expected benefits for people and the economy.

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