Study: Private wells in rural SW Wisconsin are 91% polluted

By  | 

MILWAUKEE (AP) -- A new study shows the majority of private wells in southwestern Wisconsin are substantially polluted with fecal matter as concerns intensify over pollution of rural drinking water.

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports that results from the independent study released Aug. 1 indicated that 32 of 35 wells -- or 91% -- contained fecal matter from humans or livestock.

The work was led by U.S. Agricultural Research Service research microbiologist Mark Borchardt, others in his agency and the Wisconsin Geological and Natural History Survey.

Monetary backing came from the counties, the agencies and local groups. Additional testing in the counties is likely, with the next round set for early August.

It was discovered during testing in April that some of the wells contained illness-causing pathogens such as salmonella, rotavirus and cryptosporidium.