Regulatory Inconsistencies in the Safe Drinking Water Act: Public Water System Supervision Program in Indian Country and the Effects on Public Health

Date of Award


Document Type

Capstone Project


Environmental Policy And Management

Degree Name

Master of Applied Science


Environmental Policy And Management


Kenneth Mesch


Drinking water, Law and legislation, United States, Indian country, Indians of North America, water rights, public health, regulatory inconsistencies, Safe Drinking Water Act


Through treaties, Indian law, and tribal policies, the United States Federal Government is obligated to protect the public health of the American Indian population while upholding tribal sovereignty through government-to-government relations. In fulfilling its trust responsibility, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) must directly implement the Public Water System Supervision Program authorized by the 1974 Safe Drinking Water Act. However, due to regulatory gaps and Indian policies, EPA's regulatory authority is not equitably implemented throughout the nation. An historical account of Indian law and policy development, as well as an overview of traditional Native beliefs and lifestyles, frame the current status of American Indian health and the tribal governments' complex relationship with the Federal government and its enforcement of the National Primary Drinking Water Regulations in Indian country.

Publication Statement

Copyright is held by the author. Permanently suppressed.

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