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WN@tL: Private Wells in Wisconsin: An overview of common water quality problems
April 10, 2019 @ 7:00 pm - 8:15 pm
Speaker: Kevin Masarik
Speaker Bio: Kevin Masarik is a groundwater education specialist with the University of Wisconsin-Madison Division of Extension and the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point. He has assisted tens of thousands of well owners through locally organized well water testing programs. The benefits of these programs are twofold: individual well owners have a better understanding of how to manage their household water supply; and secondly, the results have helped paint a detailed picture of water quality across Wisconsin. He uses the information learned from his outreach and other research efforts to educate citizens and community leaders across the state about the importance of groundwater to Wisconsin’s overall quality of life.
Description: News about well water quality in Wisconsin may have people wondering about the quality of what’s coming out of their faucets at home. While reporting often focuses on problems, the good news is that the majority of people in Wisconsin do have access to good water. However, individuals may not know where to go for information about their drinking water, how clean it is or what to do if there is a problem. We will explore the complex relationship between land-use, geology, soils, well construction and well water quality. Some of these concerns such as pathogens, nitrate and arsenic may be important to talk about because of potential health reasons. Other common complaints people often have about the taste, color or odor of their well water may be related to the amount of iron or other minerals that occur in their water. Deciding what to test for, how often to test and what to do problems exist are the types of routine management decisions that well owners are responsible for making; often times there may be a simple solution. Our goal is to provide and overview of the science and other useful information every rural homeowner should know for managing their well water.