Protect Your Groundwater Day is Sept. 11
groundwater protects public health, the environment
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[September 11, 2012]
SPRINGFIELD -- The Illinois
Environmental Protection Agency encourages the public to protect
public health and the health of the environment by protecting
groundwater. This is Protect Your Groundwater Day, Sept. 11.
In the United States, 88 million Americans rely on
groundwater-supplied community water systems, while another 42
million Americans rely on individual household water wells.
household water well owners, how they manage their well systems and
property can make a difference in their water quality. People who do
not use household wells also can make a difference in groundwater
quality, for instance, by how they store, use and dispose of
hazardous household substances or how well they maintain their
Additionally, with drought gripping the nation, protecting
groundwater through conservation is more important than ever. From
the southwest to the southeast and from the Great Plains to the
Midwest, drought has put a strain on many household water wells --
sometimes resulting in a reduction or loss of water flow as the
water table drops. Abnormally dry or drought conditions are even
affecting Alaska, Hawaii and parts of New England.
Protect Your Groundwater Day is an occasion for every citizen to
act: Acknowledge the issue, consider how it applies to you, then
take action. Here are some steps individuals can take, courtesy of
the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency and the National Ground
Acknowledge the causes of preventable groundwater contamination
Consider what applies to you:
hazardous substances common to households. What specific
hazardous substances are in and around your home?
water use occurs in a few areas around the home. Where do you
and your family use the most water?
If you own a water well:
be a safe distance from potential contamination. Is your
wellhead a safe distance from possible contamination?
or maintained wells can facilitate contamination. Septic system
malfunctions can pollute groundwater. Is your well or septic
system due for an inspection?
Improperly abandoned wells can lead to
groundwater contamination. Are there any abandoned wells on your
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Take action to prevent groundwater
If you own a water well:
contamination sources a safe distance from the wellhead.
Get current on
your septic system inspection and cleaning.
Get an annual water well system
Environmental Protection Agency
file received from the
Illinois Office of
Communication and Information]