JACKSON, Wyo. — Teton Conservation District (TCD) is announcing the release of the Teton County, Wyoming Drinking Water Quality Mapping Project. Over the past year and a half, Teton Conservation District assembled, modeled, and mapped data for eight water quality parameters from 360 groundwater locations, which included samples from both public water systems and private drinking water wells.

The parameters sampled and mapped were chloride, fluoride, nitrate, pH, sodium, sulfate, total dissolved solids, and total hardness. The final product is a series of eight maps—one for each parameter—which display the concentration gradient in groundwater for areas where data exists. A narrative report was also developed to memorialize the process, summarize findings, and describe the product’s intended uses and constraints.

Prior to this project, there were few accessible sources of information summarizing the significant body of drinking water well data that is available for this region.

TCD’s Water Resources Specialist & Associate Director, Carlin Girard, sees this project as establishing a new baseline, “The increased priority for water quality stewardship outpaced the availability of good information on the topic. We hope that this mapping effort will help focus resource allocation to where it is needed most.”

TCD embarked on this project to offer property owners, health practitioners, resource managers, and the general public an accessible presentation of water quality data that will help characterize groundwater quality and shed light on the scope and scale of potential issues.

“Without a clear depiction of where our issues exist, people tend to feel that the problems are all-encompassing and overwhelming, when in fact, our issues are localized and can be addressed,” said Mr. Girard.

TCD hopes that this tool is used to help identify areas where human health concerns are present or could be developing. The nitrate map in particular could be incorporated into wastewater planning, drinking water protection planning, and development planning. The nitrate map will be distributed directly to obstetricians and pediatricians. Similarly, the fluoride map will be sent to dentists.

Go to www.tetonconservation.org/drinking-water-quality-mapping to download the Drinking Water Quality Mapping Project report and maps.  

Buckrail @ Caroline

Caroline Chapman is a Community News Reporter. She's a lover of alliteration, easy-to-follow recipes and board games when everyone knows the rules. Her favorite aspect about living in the Tetons is the collective admiration that Wyomingites share for the land and the life that it sustains.