EU harmonises criteria for drinking water materials

A positive list of chemicals for safe use in drinking water materials is expected by 2024. The list will cover around 1,500 chemicals.

Materials used in drinking water installations such as taps, fittings and water pipes come in direct contact with drinking water. Chemical substances from the materials may therefore migrate to the drinking water and impact on human health. Currently, substances and concentration limits for substances in drinking water vary throughout Europe. The purpose of a positive list is to improve the drinking water quality in the EU.

The list will be compiled by the European Chemicals Agency, ECHA, in collaboration with the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA).

Substances on the positive list
The first positive list will be based on existing lists from the Member States. All substances on the list will be reassessed within 15 years of its publication and given an expiry date. If a company wants to keep a substance on the positive list after the expiry date, a review application must be submitted. Applications must also be submitted for new substances to the list.

Official drinking water quality criteria (limit values) are not available for all substances migrating from drinking water materials. DHI has for many years assessed substances and proposed criteria for the drinking water quality. Our criteria form the basis of official authority criteria or are used temporarily to avoid migration of too high substance concentrations to the drinking water.  

For more information on drinking water materials, please contact:

Lise M. Møller
Tel +45 4516 9133