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Groundwater Awareness Week

Overview

Logo for National Groundwater Awareness Week

Ground Water Awareness Week is an annual observance sponsored by the National Ground Water Association. This week brings attention to the importance of ground water as a valuable resource. The observance also stresses the need for yearly water testing and well maintenance to prevent waterborne illness.

Ground water is water that is located below the surface of the earth in spaces between rock and soil. Seventy-seven percent of community water systems in the United States use ground water as their primary source, supplying drinking water to 30% of community water system users, or almost 90 million Americans 1. An additional 13 million U.S. households get their water from private ground water wells 2.

Most of the time, ground water sources in the United States are safe to use and not a cause for worry. However, ground water sources can become contaminated with bacteria, viruses, parasites, and chemicals that can lead to sickness and disease 3.

From 1971 to 2006, 54% of reported drinking water outbreaks were due to the use of untreated ground water (31%) or ground water treatment deficiencies (23%) 4. The presence of pathogens and chemicals in our drinking water can lead to health problems, including gastrointestinal illness, reproductive problems, and neurological disorders 5.

Visit the links below to learn more about ground water and Ground Water Awareness Week.

Official Website


Dates of Celebration and Additional Resources


2014

March 9-15, 2014


2013

March 10-16, 2013


2012

March 11-17, 2012


2011

March 6-12, 2011


2010

March 7-13, 2010


2009

March 8-14, 2009


2008

March 9-15, 2008


References
  1. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Ground Water and Drinking Water. Updated December 2012.
  2. U.S. Census Bureau. 2011 American Housing Survey. Plumbing, Water, and Sewage Disposal - All Occupied Units (National). July 2013.
  3. CDC. Surveillance for Waterborne Disease Outbreaks Associated with Drinking Water and Other Nonrecreational Water — United States, 2009–2010. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 2013;62(35):714-20.
  4. Craun GF, Brunkard JM, Yoder JS, Roberts VA, Carpenter J, Wade T, Calderon RL, Roberts JM, Beach MJ, Roy SL. Causes of outbreaks associated with drinking water in the United States from 1971 to 2006. Clin Microbiol Rev 2010;23:507-28.
  5. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Drinking Water Contaminants. Updated June 2012.

 
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