Groundwater on the rocks: WRI-funded research will map naturally occurring contaminants in public wells across Wisconsin

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Pumped from the vast layers of bedrock beneath our feet, groundwater is the source of drinking water for two-thirds of people living in Wisconsin. According to geochemist Matt Ginder-Vogel, what’s in that water is largely influenced by what’s in the rock. [caption id="attachment_3949" align="alignright" width="175"] Matt Ginder-Vogel is researching geogenic contaminants in public wells across Wisconsin. Photo credit: UW–Madison Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering[/caption] “Groundwater is not a lake underneath the ground. It’s water that’s in tiny pore spaces in the rock,” said Ginder-Vogel, an associate professor in the UW–Madison Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering. “So, it really interacts with the rocks around it.” Under the right conditions, this interaction can cause naturally occurring or “geogenic” contaminants—like radium, arsenic, uranium and manganese—to leach from bedrock into groundwater. Just…
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“Skill, tenacity, humility and compassion”: Jim Hurley, director of the Aquatic Sciences Center, to retire

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After 11 years as the director of the University of Wisconsin–Madison Aquatic Sciences Center, Jim Hurley will retire on Oct. 13. [caption id="attachment_3855" align="alignright" width="332"] Jim Hurley, director of the Aquatic Sciences Center. Photo credit: Wisconsin Sea Grant[/caption] Hurley oversees both the Water Resources Institute and Wisconsin Sea Grant, two federal-state partnership programs that support research, education and outreach for the protection and sustainable use of Wisconsin’s water resources. Under his leadership, both programs have addressed some of Wisconsin’s most pressing water issues—PFAS in drinking water, rising levels of radium in groundwater, coastal erosion, flooding and so much more—and provided research opportunities for the next generation of water professionals. Jon Pennock, director of the National Sea Grant College Program, said Hurley’s leadership is one reason why Wisconsin Sea Grant is…
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