Groundwater is water that comes from the ground. Rain, snow, and other forms of precipitation soak into the ground. The water moves down into the ground because of gravity, passing between particles of soil, sand, gravel, or rock until it reaches a depth where the ground is filled, or saturated, with water. The area that is filled with water is called the saturated zone and the top of this zone is called the water table. The water table may be very near the ground's surface or it may be hundreds of feet below.
Half of Michigan's residents rely on ground water for their drinking water. Groundwater also recharges our surface waters, which are used for drinking, as well as habitat for fish and other creatures in rivers, streams and lakes. Preventing groundwater contamination is necessary to sustain our health and quality of life here in the Great Lakes State.
GROUNDWATER PROTECTION - HOMEOWNERS Residential homeowners can take steps to protect groundwater, such as managing their pesticides, fertilizers and runoff from impervious surfaces. For more information, visit the residential Michigan Water Stewardship web site.
Wondering about having your water tested? Take a look at our "Water Testing" page for additional information.
GROUNDWATER PROTECTION - AGRICULTURE Agricultural producers can take steps to protect groundwater by utilizing the:
Michigan Agriculture Environmental Assurance Program (MAEAP)
Clean Sweep Program
Spill Response Program
Closing abandoned wells.
Refer to the "MAEAP" and "Groundwater Protection - Agriculture" pages for more information .
Washtenaw County Conservation District Copyright 2016