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Viewpoint: Assessing Michigan’s Response to the Flint Water Crisis: The Lead and Copper Rule and Executive Directive 2018-3


Nick LeonardPublished in Michigan Environmental Law Journal, Fall 2018, Vol. 36, No. 2, Issue 105 [view full issue].
Cite: 36 Mich Env Law J 2 (2018)

by Nick Leonard, Executive Director, The Great Lakes Environmental Law Center [1]

The Flint Water Crisis represents one of the most serious failings of environmental law and the administrative state in American history. The Lead and Copper rule, the primary regulation in existence to ensure that the drinking water delivered to people’s homes is safe, did not serve its primary function. Why that is the case is partially due to loopholes and gaps in the lead and copper rule, on which the Flint Water Crisis shone a bright light. However, the problem was not purely a matter of the language of the lead and copper rule failing to adequately protect the public health. The Crisis was also created by a failure of action on the part of the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ), the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and many non-governmental environmental watchdogs to listen to residents. After all, Flint residents started to raise the alarm bell about their drinking water immediately after the water system switched its water source by contacting experts to have the lead levels in the drinking water from their taps tested. For over one and a half years, residents of Flint and other advocates were derided as being misinformed and much worse. In the end, it was the people in charge of protecting Flint’s drinking water that admitted to being misinformed, with residents being left to live with the consequences.

The question of how the Flint Water Crisis came to be is one that has been examined by numerous residents, agencies, commissions, organizations, journalists, and many others. Michigan’s recent amendments to this rule address many of the gaps and loopholes in the regulations. However, the root cause of the Flint Water Crisis is much more complex than a few loopholes and gaps in the administrative code. The Michigan Civil Rights Commission, in its comprehensive report on the Crisis, concluded that the history of systemic racism in Flint made it a likely location for the failure of adequate regulatory oversight that occurred. Specifically, the report concluded that “[t]he lack of political clout left the residents with nowhere to turn, no way to have their voices heard.”[2] This is a problem borne of emergency managers and the stripping of local residents with the democratic control of their affairs, antiquated civil rights statutes that lack teeth for modern forms of racial and economic discrimination, and a lack of state leadership on issues such as environmental justice.

Given the recent extensive updates to the Michigan Lead and Copper Rule[3] and Executive Directive 2018-3,[4] now is an appropriate time to assess how Michigan has addressed the primary causes of the Flint Water Crisis. First, this article will highlight the extensive changes made to the Michigan Lead and Copper Rule this past summer. Second, this article will analyze Executive Directive 2018-3, which was the result of recommendations made by an Environmental Justice Work Group convened in the wake of the Crisis to develop environmental justice recommendations to Governor Snyder.

The History of Lead Contamination

Documentation of the negative impact of lead on human beings can be found as far back as ancient Egypt.[5] In modern times, many European countries banned the use of lead-based interior paints in 1909.[6] Despite this, water systems and regulators were slow to regulate the presence of lead in drinking water infrastructure. It was not until 1986 that the federal Safe Drinking Water Act was amended to require that any pipe, solder, or flux used in a public water system or any plumbing in residential or nonresidential facilities providing water for human consumption be “lead free.”[7] However, when initially adopted, the phrase “lead free” was a misnomer, as it did not prohibit the presence of lead in plumbing fixtures. Instead, the phrase “lead free” was specifically defined to require only that solders and flux contain not more than 0.2% lead, and that pipes and pipe fittings contain not more than 8% lead.[8]

In 1991, the EPA enacted the first iteration of the Lead and Copper Rule pursuant to the Safe Drinking Water Act.[9] Later, in 2011, the federal Safe Drinking Water Act was amended to lower the amount of lead that could be in pipes and pipe fittings from not more than 8% to not more than 0.25%.[10] However, given the lateness of the regulatory response, the unfortunate truth for residents in cities with old plumbing infrastructure, such as Flint, is that lead is likely present somewhere in the drinking water plumbing system.[11] One study has found that the use of lead service lines, which are the pipes that connect homes and apartment buildings to street mains, was pervasive, particularly in large Midwestern cities.[12] To make matters worse, it is often challenging for water systems and residents alike to identify if lead has been used in any portion of the service line leading to their home. A survey conducted by the American Water Works Association estimated that there are 6.1 million complete or partial lead service lines in the United States that remain in operation, serving 15 million to 22 million people.[13] 

The federal Safe Drinking Water Act requires the EPA to establish maximum contaminant level goals (MCLGs) and national primary drinking water regulations for contaminants that may have an adverse effect on the health of persons that are known or anticipated to occur in public water systems.[14] MCLGs are not regulatory requirements, but instead aspirational health goals that are set at a level at which “no known or anticipated adverse effects on the health of persons occur and which allows for an adequate margin of safety.”[15] Since there is no safe level of lead in drinking water, federal regulations have established an MCLG of zero.[16]

“[T]he American Water Works Association estimated that there are 6.1 million complete or partial lead service lines in the United States.”

The primary way lead enters drinking water is through the corrosion of pipes in the drinking water distribution system by water. This presents a unique problem, since water generally becomes contaminated with lead after it leaves the drinking water treatment system, at some point in the distribution system. As such, the federal Lead and Copper Rule primarily aims to ensure that drinking water systems are preventing the corrosion of pipes, monitoring for lead in customer’s taps, and providing customers with public education materials.

The Safe Drinking Water Act is similar to many other federal environmental laws in that it embraces the concept of cooperative federalism, meaning it allows states, including Michigan, to propose and implement their own regulatory programs in order to achieve compliance with its mandates. Additionally, similar to many other environmental laws, states are free to take more stringent action than what federal law and regulation mandate. In the wake of the Flint Water Crisis, the MDEQ did just that in the summer of 2018, when it made significant revisions to the Lead and Copper Rule under the Michigan Safe Drinking Water Act.

The Lead and Copper Rule: Distribution Systems Materials Inventory

The revised Lead and Copper Rule requires water suppliers to complete a distribution system materials inventory (DSMI) according to a schedule set by rule. By the start of 2020, every supplier must complete and submit a preliminary DSMI which must consist of a “thorough assessment of distribution system materials based on existing sources of information.”[17] By the start of 2025, every supplier must submit a complete DSMI, which must identify where lead is present in piping, storage structures, pumps, and controls used to deliver water to the public, including in service lines.[18] Notably, this inventory requirement applies to all portions of a service line, even the portion that exists on a customer’s private property.[19]

Once a supplier completes its DSMI, it must do two things to notify customers of both lead service lines and service lines of unknown contents. For the customer served by the service line, the supplier must notify the customer within 30 days if it determines that their service line contains lead,[20] and must notify any customer of a service line with unknown contents of the potential for lead in the service line.[21] For the community as a whole, the supplier must include the number of lead service lines, the number of service lines of unknown material, and the total number of service lines in the system in their annual consumer confidence report.[22]

The requirement for suppliers to complete and submit a DSMI addresses a significant regulatory gap in the Lead and Copper Rule. Previously, a supplier had to conduct a limited materials evaluation of its system to identify appropriate taps for lead sampling.[23] The requirement that all suppliers conduct a complete DSMI addresses a big issue mentioned above, which is that many suppliers are unaware where lead is in their drinking water distribution system.

The Lead and Copper Rule: Number and Frequency of Tap Samples, Tiering Criteria, and Action Level

One of the most foundational requirements of the Lead and Copper Rule is that each system must take a certain number of samples from the tap and test them for lead concentration. If the value at the 90th percentile of all lead samples collected exceeds the “action level,” then additional requirements aimed at reducing the amount of lead in the system are triggered. Given this, there are three things that are very important: first, the number and frequency of tap samples that a system must collect; second, where those samples must be collected from; third, what the action level is that triggers additional response measures from the water system.

1) Number and Frequency of Tap Samples

In regard to the frequency and number of samples, the general rule is that every system must collect at least a one-liter sample at 5 to 100 sites, depending on the number of people served by the system, every six months.[24] While these general requirements remain unchanged in the revised Lead and Copper Rule, more stringent requirements were added for certain water systems to be eligible to reduce their monitoring frequency to once every three years.[25]

2) Tiering Criteria

In regards to the selection of sites where sampling is done, this must be done in accordance with “tiering criteria.” There are three tiers of sampling sites, and a system is required to collect all tap samples from tier 1 sites. Only if there is an insufficient number of tier 1 sites can a system collect tap samples from tier 2 sites with the same being true for tier 3 sites. Tier 1 sites are meant to represent the single-family homes and, under certain circumstances, multi-family buildings, with the highest potential risk for lead exposure. However, the original rule contained a couple of loopholes. First, the previous Lead and Copper Rule permitted structures that contain copper pipes soldered with lead and installed after 1982 to be considered tier 1 sites, and allowed a water system to collect 50% of its samples from such sites and 50% from sites served by a lead service line.[26] Second, the original rule did not contain sufficient safeguards to ensure that sites identified by the water system as tier 1 sites actually met the required qualifications. This loophole was brought to light in Flint, where the selection of tier 1 sites was based on a materials evaluation survey submitted by the water system. Based on this survey, the Flint water system reported that all 2014 and 2015 tier 1 sites had lead service lines.[27] However, this information was not properly verified, and once the MDEQ reviewed the selection of tier 1 sites in 2015, it discovered only 6 sites had information that confirmed their tier 1 status.[28]

The revised Lead and Copper Rule addresses both of these loopholes. The revised rule eliminated the option for water systems to collect up to 50% of their tier 1 samples from sites with copper pipes soldered with lead and installed after 1982. Instead, tier 1 sites must be structures that contain lead pipes, or structures served by a lead service line.[29] Single family structures containing copper pipes soldered with lead were reclassified as tier 3 sites.[30] This is significant because it means a water system must exhaust all lead service line sites at single family and multi-family residences before using copper-with-lead-solder sites, which increases the likelihood that the samples collected by the water system will be the sites with the highest potential for risk for lead exposure. In regard to the second loophole, which was the possibility that sampling sites were being improperly classified, the DMSI requirements described above are partially meant to inform the identification of sampling locations and to address the informational deficiencies that previously existed.[31]

3) Lead Action Level

One of the more convoluted parts of the Lead and Copper Rule is the action level. This level serves as the threshold concentration of lead in drinking water that, if exceeded, will trigger additional requirements for the water system. Prior to the revisions, Michigan’s Lead and Copper Rule mirrored the federal Lead and Copper Rule with regard to action level. The action level contained in the federal Lead and Copper Rule is convoluted for two reasons. First, while we know there is no safe level of lead exposure, the action level for lead in the federal Lead and Copper Rule is 0.015 mg/L.[32] Therefore, it’s possible for a system to be below the action level but for someone to be harmed from lead in their drinking water. Second, compliance with the action level is determined by system basis, not on an individual tap basis. According to the federal Lead and Copper Rule, the lead action level is exceeded if the ninetieth percentile lead level exceeds 0.015 mg/L.[33] Put another way, the lead action level is exceeded “if the concentration of lead in more than 10 percent of tap water samples collected during any monitoring period is greater than 0.015 mg/L.”[34] What this means is that the lead concentrations at one or more sampling locations may be above the action level, but the system may still be in compliance with the action level.

The revised Michigan Lead and Copper Rule made a significant change to the action level provisions. First, the revised rule lowers the lead action level from the ninetieth percentile lead level of 0.015 mg/L, which is the requirement established by federal regulations, to 0.012 mg/L.[35] This requirement will become effective in 2025.[36] The requirement that a system provide notice of the individual tap results to the persons served by the tap remained largely unchanged for lead.[37]

The Lead and Copper Rule: Tap Sampling Procedures

One of the primary regulatory issues raised in the aftermath of the Flint Water Crisis was the MDEQ’s invalidation of certain samples. Specifically, several samples were taken from a home on Browning Avenue between January and June of 2015.[38] At the time, these samples were invalidated and thus not included in the ninetieth percentile lead level calculation. The EPA later concluded that there was not sufficient documentation to invalidate these samples.[39] If the samples were included in the calculation, it may have caused the ninetieth percentile calculation to exceed the action level, and triggered an earlier response by the MDEQ. To say the least, sampling procedures are very important to accurately determine if the lead action level has been exceeded. As such, the revised Lead and Copper Rule added details to ensure more consistent tap sampling.

First, the revised rule prohibits systematic flushing of a tap prior to sampling, and prohibits the cleaning or removal of a tap aerator in anticipation of sampling any tap.[40] Second, the revised rule requires sites served by lead service lines to take an additional sample. While all sites must collect a one-liter first draw sample,[41] a site served by a lead service line must also take a second sample of the 5th liter of water to come out of the tap during sampling.[42] The purpose of this 5th liter sample is that it is likely to represent the water that has been sitting in the lead service line, which may present a higher risk to health than the water sitting inside the building’s plumbing system.

The Lead and Copper Rule: Lead Service Line Replacements

At the end of the day, one of the most effective ways to prevent lead contamination of drinking water is to get rid of its source, which is the lead fixtures that exist throughout many drinking water systems. Cities such as Lansing and Madison have already completed efforts to replace all lead service lines.[43] Under the revised Lead and Copper Rule, all public water systems in Michigan will soon be required to follow suit.

Under the former Lead and Copper Rule, a system that exceeded the lead action level after implementing corrosion control was required to replace at least 7% of the lead service lines in its distribution system annually until tap samples were below the lead action level for two consecutive monitoring periods.[44] This requirement is still present in the revised Lead and Copper Rule for systems that exceed the lead action level.[45] In addition to this requirement, all systems, regardless of whether they are below the action level, must replace any lead service line and galvanized service line if it is or was connected to lead piping by 2041.[46] The definition of “lead service line” has been slightly revised, and is notably broad. A lead service line is: “a service line which is made of lead or any lead pigtail, lead gooseneck, or other lead fitting that is connected to the service line, or both.”[47] Additionally, a definition of “service line” has been added to the revised rule. A service line is: “the pipe from the discharge of the corporation fitting to customer site piping or to the building plumbing at the first shut-off valve inside the building, or 18 inches inside the building, whichever is shorter.”[48] These definitions are particularly notable because the revised rule is very clear that the water system’s mandate to replace all lead service lines and certain galvanized service lines applies to the entire line, even if the customer owns a portion of the service line.[49]

The Lead and Copper Rule: Public Education Materials

Public education is a key component of the revised Lead and Copper Rule. Under the Safe Drinking Water Act, each system is required to submit an annual report to its consumers and regulators.[50] This annual report is meant to communicate the system’s performance for that year regarding compliance with drinking water laws and regulations in a relatively readable format. The revised Lead and Copper Rule now requires information from the distribution system material inventory to be included in this annual report. Additionally, systems that exceed the lead action level must deliver public education materials to their customers.[51] The revised rule includes a number of additional detailed requirements with which systems must comply when creating and distributing public education materials under such a circumstance.

Environmental Justice

While gaps and loopholes in the Lead and Copper Rule were certainly addressed by the revised rule, as the Michigan Civil Rights Commission’s report highlighted, the causes of the Flint Water Crisis are deeper and more insidious. Environmental justice is a concept that grew out of the environmental movement starting in the 1980’s and 1990’s. This concept seeks to be a solution to its counterpoint, which is environmental injustice. Starting in the mid-1980’s, community leaders in communities of color and low income began to realize their communities were disproportionately subjected to a variety of environmental risks. Environmental justice first gained national attention in 1982, when a community in North Carolina protested the dumping of

“[L]eaders in communities of color and low income began to realize their communities were disproportionately subjected to a variety of environmental risks.”

polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) in a landfill in a low-income community of color.[52] In 1983, the Government Accounting Office conducted a study that found hazardous waste facilities were disproportionately located near communities with majority black and brown residents.[53]

Environmental justice has been defined in multiple ways. The EPA defines it as “the fair treatment and meaningful involvement of all people regardless of race, color, national origin, or income with respect to the development, implementation, and enforcement of environmental laws, regulations, and policies.”[54] In the wake of the Flint Water Crisis, errors made by our regulatory agencies in charge of administering the Lead and Copper Rule were revealed. The most consequential error was the failure of the Flint water system to maintain optimized corrosion control treatment after it switched its source water to the Flint River.[55] However, this error was not the result of a loophole; it was the result of improper administration of regulations meant to protect the public health.[56] The Lead and Copper Rule plainly requires a water system with optimized corrosion control to notify the MDEQ as early as possible prior to the addition of a new source,[57] and to continuously maintain its optimal corrosion control treatment.[58] These requirements existed before, during, and after the Flint Water Crisis. However, when the Flint water system switched to a new source, the MDEQ did not require the system to maintain its optimized corrosion control treatment or otherwise revise it.[59] As a result, the highly corrosive water from the Flint River caused high levels of lead to leach from the pipes into the water. Additionally, the MDEQ did not issue any violation for the system failing to submit timely lead and copper reports in January and July of 2015, which may have delayed the MDEQ’s response.[60] This, too, was an existing requirement.

Given that Flint is a majority-black city with a median household income of $28,015, the question that many Flint residents and environmental advocates asked was whether this crisis would have occurred and been allowed to play out in a different community in the same tragic fashion as it did in a low-income community of color. The succinct answer from the Michigan Civil Rights Commission was “no,” and the history of environmental injustice backs it up. As such, any assessment of the response to the Flint Water Crisis must address the systemic racism that was at the heart of the crisis.

Executive Directive 2018-3

Partially in response to the assertion by the Michigan Civil Rights Commission that the causes of the Flint Water Crisis were rooted in systemic racism, in February of 2017 Governor Snyder created the Environmental Justice Work Group “to develop and provide recommendations to the Governor that improve environmental justice awareness and engagement in state and local agencies.”[61] The group consisted of a number of environmental advocates and, in March of 2018, the group submitted 26 pages of recommendations to the Governor. On July 25, 2018, Governor Snyder signed Executive Directive 2018-3 adopting two recommendations made by the Work Group. The directive created an Environmental Justice Interagency Work Group consisting of the Department of Civil Rights, the Michigan Economic Development Corporation, the Department of Environmental Quality, the Department of Health and Human Services, and the Department of Transportation.[62] This interagency group has been charged with, among other things, reviewing and considering environmental justice issues brought to its attention, assisting departments in the development of environmental justice policies and procedures, and recommending measures to promote environmental justice in the state.[63] Additionally, Governor Snyder created the new position of “environmental justice ombudsman” to serve as the statewide point of contact for the public to raise concerns regarding potential environmental justice issues.[64] Given the stark nature of the Flint Water Crisis as one of the most haunting environmental justice issues in modern America, is this enough? It is too early to tell, but there is cause for pessimism.

“[M]any states have taken more aggressive legislative, regulatory, and policy action to further environmental justice while Michigan has remained in the veritable dark ages.”

The trouble with the Governor’s Executive Directive establishing an Interagency Work Group—with the directive that the group assist in the development of environmental justice policies—is that we have been here before. In 2007, Governor Granholm issued Executive Directive 2007-23 which instructed the MDEQ to establish an interagency workgroup to create an environmental justice policy.[65] The directive lead to the creation of the Michigan Environmental Justice Plan in 2010.[66] Despite the 2010 plan being significantly weakened from the draft version, it largely has sat on the shelf. Since 2010, many states have taken more aggressive legislative, regulatory, and policy action to further environmental justice while Michigan has remained in the veritable dark ages.[67] This has been illustrated in other divisions within the MDEQ, the agency with the most central role in promoting environmental justice.

The air quality division, in response to comments submitted by low-income communities of color, has stated that it strives “to protect the health and welfare of all citizens of the State of Michigan equally” and that since environmental laws are meant to protect all segments of our society, it does not investigate the economic or racial demographics of the area that is maximally impacted by the decisions it makes.[68] Instead, it simply analyzes whether the applicable laws and regulations that exist to protect the public health are being complied with.[69] To put it frankly, this is a misrepresentation of the concept of environmental justice. This mistaken concept ignores the root cause of the Flint Water Crisis, and all other environmental injustices, which is systemic racism. In order to address that problem, the MDEQ, as well as other state agencies, must first correct their mistaken understanding of what environmental justice is, and how it can be implemented. The only way to ensure that another environmental injustice such as the Flint Water Crisis does not occur again is by the future Governor and state agencies, particularly the MDEQ, taking affirmative actions, including the enactment of laws, regulations, and policies, that specifically exist to address the fact that communities of color and lower income have been and continue to be disproportionately subjected to a higher level of environmental risks than wealthy, white communities. What form that should take is provided for in the draft Michigan’s Environmental Justice Plan from 2010. Until these affirmative actions are taken by the state, we will have addressed only the symptom of the problem, but not the disease that caused it.

[1] In accordance with the MELJ’s mission statement regarding publication of viewpoint articles, the positions advanced within this piece are those of the author and do not purport to represent the Environmental Law Section’s position on any legal issue.

[2] Michigan Civil Rights Commission, The Flint Water Crisis: Systemic Racism Through the Lens of Flint (February 17, 2017), p 4. 

[3] Michigan Department of Environmental Quality, Rule Promulgation, (accessed September 22, 2018).

[4] Executive Directive No. 2018-3 (effective July 25, 2018).

[5] Anna Clark, The Poisoned City, (Hungry Holt and Co., 2018), p 86.

[6] Id. at p 265 n 26.

[7] 42 USC 300g-6.

[8] Safe Drinking Water Act Amendments of 1986, 100 Stat 642 (Enacted June 19, 1986).

[9] 56 Fed Reg 26460 (June 7, 1991).

[10] Reduction of Lead in Drinking Water Act, 111 PL 380, 124 Stat 4131 (Enacted January 4, 2011).

[11] Estimates of the number of lead service lines in the United States vary, but the “best estimates range between 3.3 million and 10 million.” Clark, p 98.

[12] Werner Troesken and Patricia E. Beeson, The Significance of Lead Water Mains in American Cities: Some Historical Evidence (January 2003), p 182.

[13] David A. Cornwell, Richard A. Brown, and Steve H. Via, National Survey of Lead Service Line Occurrence (2016), p E182.

[14] 42 USC 300g-1(b)(1)(A). 

[15] 42 USC 300g-1(b)(4).

[16] 40 CFR 141.51(b) (1996).

[17] Mich Admin Code, R 325.11604(c)(i).

[18] Mich Admin Code, R 325.11604(c)(ii).

[19] Mich Admin Code, R 325.11604(c)(iii).

[20] Mich Admin Code, R 325.11604(c)(v).

[21] Mich Admin Code, R 325.11604(c)(iv).

[22] Mich Admin Code, R 325.11604(c)(vi).

[23] See Mich Admin Code, R 325.10710a(1)(a).

[24] See Mich Admin Code, R 325.10710a(3); Mich Admin Code, R 325.10710a(4)(c).

[25] See Mich Admin Code, R 325.10710a(4)(d)(iii).

[26] Mich Admin Code, R 325.10710a(1)(h).

[27] U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Review of the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality Drinking Water Program 2016: Final Report (October 24, 2017), p 26.

[28] Id.

[29] Mich Admin Code, R 325.10710a(1)(c).

[30] Mich Admin Code, R 325.10710a(1)(e).

[31] See Mich Admin Code, R 325.10710a(1)(a).

[32] 40 CFR 141.80(c)(1) (2007).

[33] Id.

[34] U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Lead and Copper Monitoring and Reporting Guidance for Public Water Systems (February 2002), p 34.

[35] Mich Admin Code, R 325.10604f(1)(c).

[36] Id.

[37] Mich Admin Code, R 325.10410(5).

[38] Review of the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality Drinking Water Program 2016, p 26.

[39] Id.

[40] Mich Admin Code, R 325.10710a(2)(a)(i); Mich Admin Code, R 325.10710a(2)(b)(i).

[41] Mich Admin Code, R 325.10710a(2)(a)(ii); Mich Admin Code, R 325.10710a(2)(b)(i)(B).

[42] Mich Admin Code, R 325.10710a(2)(b)(i)(C).

[43] Gerstein, Lansing Replaces City’s Final Lead Service Line, Detroit News, (December 14, 2016).

[44] 40 CFR 141.84 (2007).

[45] Mich Admin Code, R 325.10604f(5).

[46] Mich Admin Code, R 325.10604f(6)(a); Mich Admin Code, R 325.10604f(6)(b).

[47] Mich Admin Code, R 325.10105(r).

[48] Mich Admin Code, R 325.10108(e).

[49] Mich Admin Code, R 325.10604f(6)(e).

[50] 42 USC 300g-3(c)(4).

[51] Mich Admin Code, R 325.10410(1).

[52] National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, Advancing Environmental Justice (July 2015), p 5, (accessed February 12, 2017). 

[53] United States General Accounting Office, Siting of Hazardous Waste Landfills And Their

Correlation With Racial And Economic Status Of Surrounding Communities (June 1, 1983).

[54] U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Environmental Justice, (accessed September 23, 2018).

[55] Review of the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality Drinking Water Program 2016, p 23.

[56] Id.

[57] Mich Admin Code, R 325.10710a(4)(d)(vii); Mich Admin Code, R 325.10710d(a)(iii).

[58] Mich Admin Code, R 325.10604f(2)(b).

[59] Review of the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality Drinking Water Program 2016, p 23.

[60] Id. at 29.

[61] Environmental Justice Work Group Report (Mar. 2018), p 4.

[62] Executive Directive No. 2018-3.

[63] Id.

[64] Office of Governor Rick Synder, Gov. Rick Snyder Issues Executive Directive Implementing Recommendations of Environmental Justice Work Group (July 25, 2018).

[65] Executive Directive No. 2007-23, effective November 21, 2017.

[66] Michigan Environmental Justice Coalition, MI EJ Plan 2009/2010, (accessed September 23, 2018).

[67] See, American Bar Association and Hastings College of Law, Environmental Justice for All: A Fifty State Survey of Legislation, Policies and Cases (Feb. 15, 2010).

[68] Michigan Department of Environmental Quality, Response to Comments Document, Dearborn Industrial Generation, LLC, Permit to Install No. 163-17.

[69] Id.