NHDES launches well testing effort

500 wells across state to be analyzed for 250 chemicals
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The New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services has begun sampling 500 randomly selected private wells around the state to test for over 250 chemicals, including volatile organic compounds, metals, radionuclides, per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) and pesticides.

The sampling is being paid for through a grant from the Drinking Water and Groundwater Trust Fund. DES said the sampling will provide information to homeowners about the quality of their drinking water and when necessary, steps that can be taken to improve water quality.

State officials and scientists say they will also use the information to evaluate the occurrence, concentration and sources of certain emerging drinking water contaminants, including perchlorate, 1,4-dioxane, PFAS and pesticides and their breakdown products.

The sampling also will provide the first statewide assessment of bacteria, nitrate, lead, salt, fluoride, manganese, arsenic, radionuclides and salt in water obtained from private wells, and it will build on previous statewide assessments that have been conducted on other contaminants such as arsenic and radon.

Officials said the information will provide a holistic snapshot of the quality of water in private wells and identify trends and patterns of the water quality relative to location of the well, nearby land uses, geology, well type and other factors that can impact water quality.

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