Improving and Protecting Water Well Quality
Thousands of Kansans rely on nonpublic water wells for their household, including providing water for drinking, cooking, bathing, household pets, and cleaning purposes. While approximately 70,000 nonpublic wells are registered in the state of Kansas to provide household water, the quality of the water is not guaranteed and may be contaminated from a range of environmental, industrial, and agricultural contaminants. Contamination of nonpublic water wells is far too common, and most well users are unaware that their water is not safe.
There are few protections at the state or local level to ensure that water from nonpublic water wells is safe. Explore our site for more information on how the project team helped develop recommendations that seek to address the problem by providing concrete steps that, if taken, would provide increased protections for Kansans relying on nonpublic water wells for household use.
The recommendations included here were compiled as part of the Nonpublic Household Water Well Project, a three-year project led by the Department of Population Health at the University of Kansas School of Medicine-Wichita (KUSM-W), in partnership with the Public Health Law Center, and funded by the Kansas Health Foundation. The purpose was to identify promising practices that could protect Kansans relying on nonpublic water wells for household purposes. The project team included public health and legal professionals with experience working on groundwater quality issues impacting nonpublic water wells in Kansas.