Here’s Why There Is Still So Much Lead Pipe in Chicago
Even though lead in drinking water damages children's development, the Environmental Protection Agency has forced very few cities to replace their lead pipes.
Consider Chicago, with more water pipes made out of lead than any U.S. city, some 400,000. About 7% of homes that requested sampling last year exceeded federal limits, and in at least 73 homes, it was at least twice that much, according to an AP analysis of more than 3,500 samples collected using a method that’s more sensitive than the federal government's.
Yet that many homes was never enough to trigger the mandate to remove pipes.