Mississippi State Department of Health

Groundwater Protection


Groundwater is a precious natural resource that supplies 75% of Mississippi's water needs.

Where Your Groundwater Comes From

The State of Mississippi uses about 3½ billion gallons of water every day. Only one-fourth of that comes from surface water like lakes or reservoirs. The other 2½ billion gallons comes from groundwater: rainfall that has traveled through soil and miles of underground sand deposits to the water wells you use.

Groundwater Safety

Thanks to natural filtration, most groundwater is safe to drink with very little treatment. A small amount of chlorine may be added for disinfection. But because the path from rainwater to tapwater is so long, it's potentially exposed to ground pollution, chemical runoff, and contamination from river or sewer runoff. Keeping groundwater safe, clean and inexpensive to treat means taking care of land and water.

Keeping Groundwater Clean

For Those on Private Wells

Just as you check your furnace or smoke detector batteries seasonally, spring is a good season to have an annual water well checkup before the peak water use season begins.

Good well maintenance can prolong the life of your well and save money in repair costs over time. Test your water annually, or whenever there is a change in taste, odor, or appearance, or if you have your system serviced.

An annual checkup by a qualified water well contractor is the best way to ensure problem-free service and quality water.

Good Practices for Your Home Well

The Mississippi State Department of Health recommends that home well owners:

Your annual water well checkup

A check of your well by a qualified water well contractor may include:

For Those on Public Water Systems

Rural Water Associations, Municipal Water, Water Districts, etc.

Most systems that fall into these categories are public water systems regulated by MSDH. Their water is tested on a regular basis as directed by the EPA. Anytime a system is out of compliance, the public is notified directly, or in a yearly compliance report, depending on severity.

The entire State of Mississippi is covered by 10 Regional Engineers who inspect systems, resolve complaints, review plans and specifications for system upgrades, and teach water operators how to properly run their facility in order to produce the best water possible for your consumption.

More Information

Links referenced on this page
Re-use water    http://www.epa.gov/region9/water/recycling/
plant-friendly shampoos and soaps    https://greywateraction.org/greywater-plant-friendly-products/
A Citizen's Guide to Groundwater Protection    http://water.epa.gov/infrastructure/drinkingwater/sourcewater/protection/upload/2007_11_29_sourcewater_pubs_citguid.pdf
Well Owners' Information Sheets    http://wellowner.org/
The National Groundwater Association    http://www.ngwa.org
Well Owners' Information Sheets    http://wellowner.org/
WellOwner.org    http://WellOwner.org
Private Water Well Disinfection    http://msdh.ms.gov/msdhsite/index.cfm/30,1937,76,762,html ok

Find this page at https://msdh.ms.gov/page/30,13605,76.html

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