Source Water Articles: Protection

To view the articles download Adobe© Reader©. It's free. Articles are provided by the National Drinking Water Clearinghouse and the National Small Flows Clearinghouse, both programs of the NESC at NRCCE-WVU.

Groundwater Protection

Protecting Your Groundwater Source
On Tap magazine, Issue: Spring 2006 [pdf file 824 KB]
Most small water systems rely on groundwater for their source. This article looks at what goes on beneath the Earth's surface and provides ways to protect groundwater now and in the future.

Groundwater 101
On Tap magazine, Issue: Fall 2003 [pdf file 328 KB]
One of our most valuable resources is right beneath our feet and we can't even see it. The old adage "out of sight, out of mind" certainly applies to groundwater.

Tech Brief: Turbidity Control
On Tap magazine, Issue: Summer 2006 [pdf file 136 KB]
Describes treatment technologies and issues for drinking water professionals, discusses turbidity control. Often described as the cloudiness observed in source water, turbidity can hinder treatment methods. This Tech Brief examines turbidity and implications with the phenomenon from source to distribution.

Tech Brief: Preventing Well Contamination
On Tap magazine, Issue: Fall 2003 [pdf file 900 KB]
Wells need to be sited and built to prevent groundwater contamination. This Tech Brief presents tips about how to site a well and includes information about design issues; material selection and location, such as screens and filter pack; appropriate well sealing methods; and using pitless adaptors.

Tech Brief: Sanitary Surveys
On Tap magazine, Issue: Winter 2005 [pdf file 412 KB]
A sanitary survey is an inspection of the entire water system, including the water source, facilities, equipment, operation, and maintenance. Usually conducted by a member of the state primacy agency, the purpose of these mandatory surveys is to help prevent and correct water system deficiencies.

Volunteer Teens Get Down and Dirty: North Carolina's Less Fortunate Get Help
Small Flows Quarterly magazine, Issue: Fall/Winter 2007 [pdf file 432 KB]
This article describes a volunteer program run by the North Carolina Rural Community Assistance Project that brings volunteer teens from across the country to help repair and install septic systems for low income people.

Water Softener Backwash Brine Stresses Household Septic Tanks and Treatment Systems
Small Flows Quarterly magazine, Issue: Fall/Winter 2007 [pdf file 272 KB]
Mark Gross, Ph.D., P.E., and Terry Bounds, P.E., champion their view that water softener backwash brine stresses septic systems and suggest simple and inexpensive discharge alternatives in the "Small Flows Forum" in their opinion piece titled Water Softener Backwash Brine Stresses Household Septic Tanks and Treatment Systems.

Making an IMPACT: The Watershed Approach
Small Flows Quarterly magazine, Issue: Fall 2006 [pdf file 1.5 MG]
Nearly 40 percent of streams, 45 percent of lakes, and 50 percent of estuaries that have been assessed across the U.S. are still not clean enough to support uses such as fishing and swimming. One of the reasons for such dismal numbers is polluted watersheds, and this article describes the federal programs and private organizations that are working to change that.

Indian Point: A Grassroots Model for Onsite Management
Small Flows Quarterly magazine, Issue: Fall 2005 [pdf file 1.1 MG]
Studies at Indian Point had shown that the septic tanks and lateral lines most residents used to treat and dispose of wastewater were ineffective and were polluting the lake. To solve the problem, the community looked at advanced onsite treatment systems that could be scaled for use in both small and large cluster systems and to adopt a consolidated approach to decentralized wastewater systems, both private and public. This article describes the types of systems used, the management system adopted, and the various obstacles the community had to overcome.

The Status and Future of Decentralized and Onsite Wastewater Treatment Technologies in Florida
Small Flows Quarterly magazine, Issue: Winter 2005 [pdf file 212 KB]
This White Paper, commissioned by the Florida Onsite Wastewater Association, Inc. (FOWA), a non-profit corporation, is intended to examine the status of Florida's water recycling efforts and offer sound choices for future water management efforts.

Onsite Management at the Start of the New Millennium
Small Flows Quarterly magazine, Issue: Winter 2000 [pdf file 224 KB]
This article examines the various components involved in the effective management of the onsite industry and how it protects our ecosystems and watershed from the negative impacts from household wastewater treated by and discharged from these systems.

Wastewater Management Surfaces as an Important Issue in the New Millennium
Small Flows Quarterly magazine, Issue: Winter 2000 [pdf file 616 KB]
There are local communities that are forced year and year to pay two to four times more than should be necessary for an often unmanageable wastewater service. This scenario can be avoided by allowing communities to consider the entire mix of appropriate technologies and reuse opportunities from the outset. This article looks at these alternatives

Bacterial Source Tracking Uncovers Culprits of Contamination in Watersheds
Small Flows Quarterly magazine, Issue: Fall 2003 [pdf file 284 KB]
Bacterial Source Tracking (BST) is a relatively new methodology that has been developed and deployed in many parts of the U.S. to identify sources of fecal contamination in watersheds. The three basic types are molecular, biochemical, and chemical. These methods, and their costs and benefits, are described in this article.

Tire Chips: A Growing Trend as Aggregate in Soil Absorption Systems
Small Flows Quarterly magazine, Issue: Fall 2003 [pdf file 648 KB]
Research has proven tire chips are a viable alternative to gravel. They are frequently used in southern states because soil is sandy and rock quarries are nonexistent. This article describes cost considerations, quality control, the future of tire chips as aggregate, and examples of its use in South Carolina, Arkansas, and New Mexico.

Drainfield Rehabilitation
Small Flows Quarterly magazine, Issue: Winter 2006 [pdf file 1 MG]
This article looks at reasons drainfields fail and the procedures for correcting the problem, including both short term and long term solutions.

Eradicating Straight Pipes and Failed Systems in Kentucky
Small Flows Quarterly magazine, Issue: Summer 2005 [pdf file 1 MG]
This article presents a case study of a Kentucky community's septic system problems, and the steps taken to solve the problem, including securing funding, partnering relationships, homeowner involvement, and operations and management.

The Regulation of Alternative Onsite Wastewater Treatment Systems in the Great Lakes Region
Small Flows Quarterly magazine, Issue: Winter 2006 [pdf file 812 KB]
Authors H. S. Gorman, Ph.D. and K. E. Halvorsen, Ph.D. summarize their  findings for program elements related to the permitting and maintenance of alternative systems in the Great Lakes region. The authors surveyed Onsite Wastewater Treatment Systems (OWTS) program administrators with jurisdictions bordering a Great Lake, and in evaluating the survey results, found that there is a trend in the region toward accommodating the permitting of alternative systems by making OWTS codes less prescriptive and more performance based.