A half dozen groups are asking the federal EPA to investigate longstanding groundwater contamination issues in Kewaunee County. The groups, Kewaunee Cares, Clean Wisconsin, Environmental Integrity Project, Midwest Environmental Advocates, Midwest Environmental Defense Center, & the Clean Water Action Council of Northeast Wisconsin have jointly filed a petition for emergency action by the Environmental Protection Agency under the Safe Drinking Water Act. The law allows the EPA to step in to provide safe drinking water in an area where contamination poses serious public health threats.
According to the petition, well testing from 2013 revealed that just over 30% of tested wells in Kewaunee County have unsafe bacteria, high nitrate levels, or both. In the request, the groups are asking the EPA to evaluate the “imminent & substantial endangerment to public health in the county” due to pollutants from concentrated animal feeding operations, OR CAFOs, test nearby residential wells, supply a free source of clean drinking water to those whose wells are unsafe, install groundwater monitoring wells, & investigate whether Wisconsin’s nutrient management standards & practices sufficiently protect groundwater from contamination in karst areas like Kewaunee County that have shallow soils & fractured bedrock. To see the full petition click the following link 2014-10-22_Kewaunee_SDWA_Petition_to_EPA(1)