Frequently Asked Questions About Source Water

What is a source water assessment?

A source water assessment is a study that defines the land area contributing water to each public water system, identifies the major potential sources of contamination that could affect the drinking water supply, and then determines how susceptible the public water supply is to this potential contamination. Public utilities and citizens can then use the publicly available study results to the take actions to reduce potential sources of contamination and protect drinking water. As required by the Safe Drinking Water Act, states have completed source water assessments for virtually every public water system.

For more information see EPA's Source Water Assessments page.

Source Water Assessment
Image: Department of Geosciences Stony Brook State University of New York

This information is adapted from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Source Water Protection Web site found at http://cfpub.epa.gov/safewater/sourcewater/.