Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources
Press Release

Annual Drinking Water Report Shows Compliance Despite Pandemic Challenges

 

By - Aug 24th, 2021 12:51 pm

MADISON, Wis. – The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) has released its 2020 Annual Drinking Water Report. The report shows compliance with the drinking water requirements and statewide efforts to help public water systems provide safe and adequate drinking water supplies throughout the COVID-19 public health emergency.

Last year, more than 98% of Wisconsin’s public water systems provided water that met all the health-based drinking water standards. This high compliance was achieved even though COVID-19 affected operations of public water systems statewide. Water system personnel, DNR staff and partners collaborated to find solutions to the challenges and create new ways of working together.

“The pandemic exemplified how critically important access to safe drinking water is for everyone,” said Steve Elmore, DNR Bureau of Drinking Water and Groundwater Program Director. “Safe drinking water has been essential throughout the pandemic, not just for drinking. We also depend on it for hand washing and minimizing disease risk. This year’s report showcases efforts by the DNR and water system owners and operators in response to the drinking water challenges caused by the pandemic.”

Achieving compliance requires efforts on many fronts. Water systems collect samples regularly to monitor their water quality. The DNR inspects public water systems on a routine schedule and also conducts on-site assessments when bacterial contaminants are detected. Additionally, the DNR’s Safe Drinking Water Loan Program helps communities repair and improve their water systems. In 2020, the DNR provided more than $93 million in assistance to 14 communities around the state.

The 2020 Annual Drinking Water Report is available on the DNR website, or by calling 608-266-1054 to request a copy.

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