Nitrate Contamination of Domestic Wells in Georgia
Tyson, Anthony W.
Segars, William I.
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Beginning in 1989 the University of Georgia Cooperative Extension Service began compiling a data base to determine the extent and distribution of nitrate contamination of domestic wells in Georgia. From 1989 through 1993 3,419 wells with a known depth were sampled and analyzed for fifteen mineral elements plus pH, hardness and nitrate-nitrogen (NO 3-N). Of the shallow wells (less than 100 feet) 3.8 % had NO 3-N concentrations which exceeded EPA's action level of 10 milligrams per liter (mg/1.) Of the deep wells(100 feet or greater) 0.9 % exceeded EPA's action level. All areas of the state were found to have some contaminated wells although the problems appear to be localized and limited mostly to shallow wells. Wells from farms where livestock or poultry were raised typically had a greater incidence of elevated nitrate levels.
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