DNR must lead to protect state’s drinking water | Column

Kewaunee County and its neighbors have a serious groundwater contamination problem.
A recent study not only found that wells in areas of greater soil depth were being contaminated with dangerous pathogens, but that up to 60 percent of wells tested were affected, nearly doubling the tally from previous studies.
In 2014, Clean Wisconsin, along with Midwest Environmental Advocates and local citizens, filed a Safe Drinking Water Act petition with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency asking for help for Kewaunee County residents.
Kewaunee County’s geology makes it vulnerable to groundwater contamination from manure spreading on the landscape.
Kewaunee County residents deserve a robust and thorough effort from the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources to address drinking water contamination.
For much of the past year, the DNR has pointed to a new set of protections being drafted as their effort to address drinking water contamination from livestock manure.
Access to clean, safe drinking water is every Wisconsin citizens’ right.
For too long, too many citizens in Kewaunee County and elsewhere in the state have been denied that right.
Through these protections, we think the DNR can reduce the risk of drinking water contamination by: Putting limits on when, where and how manure can be spread.
By writing strong rules, the DNR can help citizens with contaminated drinking water have safe wells that draw clean water while giving farmers the tools to effectively manage their livestock byproduct.

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