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Upcoming Events

September 9, 1:30PM-5:30PM, Clean Water for NC’s Regional Summit on Impacts of Atlantic Coast Pipeline. Wilson, NC. Advance registration required: register at tinyurl.com/ACPsummit.

Your Drinking Water

Groundwater and surface water (rivers, lakes, and streams, etc.) make up North Carolina’s drinking water. Select from the following options and frequently requested topics to find resources to answer your drinking water questions, or scroll down to browse all our resources! Download a printable quick reference booklet on how to protect your drinking water. (Spanish version)

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Protecting Your Well

Are you one of the more than 3 million private well users in NC? Most wells have never been inspected or tested for more than bacteria, even when state and local agencies knew of nearby contamination sites. CWFNC works for protection of groundwater and well users throughout the state.

If your well was installed after July 2008 (when the state began to require licenses for new wells):

  • Be sure to report any odd tastes or odors. You can also ask them for a copy of your water quality test results and a copy of your well certificate.
  • Request additional testing by contacting your county’s environmental health representative. A test every 3-5 years is recommended.
  • Well sampling costs and new permit costs for each county can be viewed here.

If your well was installed before July 2008:

  • This link will take you to a list of county health department contacts. Find your local contact, call, and ask for the well program.
  • CWFNC recommends testing your well for at a minimum: Total Coliform Bacteria, Arsenic, Lead, Zinc, and nitrates/nitrites. A full water test (required since 2008) would also include: barium, cadmium, Copper, Fluoride, Iron, Magnesium, Manganese, Mercury, selenium, silver, Sodium, and pH.
  • For an analysis of state private well water quality, in comparison to groundwater standards, please use this link for the section entitled “Statewide Comparison to Groundwater Standards.”

Well Construction Regulations in NC

Contact the staff at NC Dept. of Environmental Quality – Water Resources
Regional Office contact information can be viewed here.

The Southeast Rural Community Assistance Project (SERCAP) offers free well assessments to identify potential threats to your well. Click here to view a flyer with details on this program.

Please view the FAQs on well water contamination, including questions about contamination, well water testing, and how to gather further information. Environmental Working Group also has an excellent primer on private well water safety.

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Publicly-owned Water Systems

  • Contact your water supplier (the City, County, or other public authority that provides the water) first to report any water quality problems or billing questions.
  • Find your water system data – At this link, you can search by water system name, type or county served. You’ll find information on emergency contacts, past water quality violations, and more.
  • Basic information about Consumer Confidence Reports – you should receive an annual report from your water supplier on your drinking water quality. This is required under the national Safe Drinking Water Act.
  • Factsheet: Secondary contaminants (such as iron and sediment)
  • Learn more about fluoride in drinking water:

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Privately-owned Water Systems

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Learn About the Source of Your Drinking Water

North Carolina’s Source Water Protection Program (SWP) is a voluntary program supporting local efforts to protect the sources of drinking water. Learn more at the Source Water Protection website or through the Environmental Protection Agency’s Source Water Protection page.

The Well Head Protection Program (WHPP)
A WHPP is a pollution prevention and management program used to protect underground sources of drinking water. These programs were intended by Congress to be a key part of a national ground-water protection strategy to prevent contamination of ground-waters that are used as public drinking water supplies. In North Carolina, development of a local Wellhead Protection Plan is not mandatory but, rather, is viewed as a valuable supplement to existing state groundwater protection programs. North Carolina’s WHPP is intended for city and county governments and water supply operators who wish to provide added protection to their local ground-water supplies.
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Source Water Assessment Program Map

Source water assessment differs from source water protection because it highlights factors that could potentially influence the quality of source water (such as known underground sources of contamination that could affect local groundwater, or other sources of pollution). NC has a map tool you can use to look up your drinking water supply and nearby potential sources of contamination: click here to view and explore the map.
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North Carolina’s Watersheds

NC Watersheds, click to enlarge.

Find your watershed and learn more about it with the North Carolina River Basins Interactive Map.
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