Two Wisconsin icons, dairy cows and fresh water, appear to be at war. Two new studies, one from U.S. Department of Agriculture research engineer Tucker Burch and one from USDA microbiologist Mark Borchardt, find that in Northeast Wisconsin cow manure flowing into drinking waters accounts for ~76% of human gastrointestinal illnesses. Worse yet, the normal response — digging a deeper well — may be of little protection. Thousands of private wells in Northeast Wisconsin have been declared unfit to drink and the new studies call into question the effectiveness of regulations to protect drinking water. Coburn Dukehart, Digital and Multimedia Director from the Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism has the story.
Photo Credit: Tad Dukehart for Wisconsin Watch