Ministry of Natural Resources: Offer free well water testing during agricultural technology days


CLEAR WATER, Wis. – The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) today announced that the department is once again providing free well nitrate testing during Agricultural Technology Days July 12-14.

Nitrate is the most common health-related contaminant found in Wisconsin groundwater. The DNR will offer free on-site screening. The results will be available in just a few minutes. If you wish to have your water filtered, bring a cup of well water in any clean container to stand 485.

“Statewide, about 10 percent of private wells may contain high levels of nitrate, and nearly a third of private well owners have never had their water tested for nitrate,” said Stacy Steinke, DNR private water field supervisor. “We generally see higher nitrate levels occurring in areas with a high agricultural presence or a concentration of septic systems. Everyone should avoid long-term nitrate intake above the 10 parts per million level. Areas with sandy soils or fractured bedrock near the surface can make areas more prone to groundwater contamination.

Infants or pregnant women should not consume water containing nitrate nitrogen levels above 10 mg/L. MNR staff will be on hand to answer questions and may recommend additional testing if high nitrate levels are detected.

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