Can we test the water in a water table for pollution before we dig a well?



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    Yes we can, and it’s the law pretty much everywhere in the United States. Drinking water is subject to a number of regulatory standards both at the state and federal level. Usually a local government or state government will have a regulatory scheme that will require the issuance of a permit before a well can be dug, and testing for pollution is one of the requirements of getting a permit. This is usually done by digging what’s called a test well which is basically just a small opening in the water table that enables lab samples of the water to be taken. In addition, local and state governments will usually test known aquifiers and other existing water sources on a regular basis to monitor them for pollution, or if a pollution event such as a chemical spill has occurred testing will be done to see if the water table has been impacted. Illegal or unpermitted wells are subject to fines and their owners liable for criminal sanctions or damages.

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