Protecting Wisconsin's Groundwater Through Comprehensive Planning
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  Door County
  This report provides the most current information and data found, as of May 2007, unless otherwise noted.
  Door County groundwater findings reports Door County full report Switch to Door County full report


  • Wisconsin has nearly 11,500 public water systems which meet the daily water needs of about 4 million people. Public water systems that are owned by a community are called municipal water systems. Door County has 3 municipal water systems.  Table showing water systems in Door County

GROUNDWATER PROTECTION POLICIES   Table showing water systems in Door County

  • 2 of 3 municipal water systems in Door County have a wellhead protection plan: Sister Bay and Sturgeon Bay.
  • 1 of 3 municipal water systems in Door County has a wellhead protection ordinance: Sister Bay.
  • Door County has adopted an animal waste management ordinance.


  • Over $8 million has been spent on petroleum cleanup in Door County from leaking underground storage tanks, which equates to $297 per county resident.
  • No municipal water systems in Door County have spent money to reduce nitrate levels.

GROUNDWATER USE   Water use figure

  • From 1979 to 2005, total water use in Door County has fluctuated from 3.3 million gallons per day to about 6.9 million gallons per day.*
  • The fluctuation in total water use over this period is due primarily to all usage categories, with aquaculture contributing to the largest increase.
  • The proportion of county water use supplied by groundwater decreased from over 99% to about 72% during the period 1979 to 2005.*
  • Water use in Wisconsin is generally estimated for the following categories:
    • Domestic
    • Livestock
    • Aquaculture
    • Irrigation
    • Industrial
    • Commercial
    • Public use and losses
    • Thermoelectric or mining

* Thermoelectric and mining data are not considered in water-use tables or figures on this web site. Thermoelectric-power water use is the amount of water used in the process of generating thermoelectric power. The predominant use of water is as non-contact cooling water to condense the steam created to turn the turbines and generate electricity.



  • Wisconsin has abundant quantities of high-quality groundwater, but once groundwater is contaminated, it's very expensive and often not technically possible to clean.
  • An evaluation of the susceptibility of groundwater to contamination in Door County can be seen in the FULL REPORT or accessed through the map link above.


  • 97% of 682 private well samples collected in Door County from 1990-2006 met the health-based drinking water limit for nitrate-nitrogen.   Nitrate map
  • A 2002 study estimated that 33% of private drinking water wells in the region of Wisconsin that includes Door County contained a detectable level of an herbicide or herbicide metabolite. Pesticides occur in groundwater more commonly in agricultural regions, but can occur anywhere pesticides are stored or applied.   Statewide pesticide map
  • There are no atrazine prohibition areas in Door County.
  • 100% of 72 private well samples collected in Door County met the health standard for arsenic.


  • There are 62 open-status sites in Door County with contaminated groundwater and/or soil. These sites are composed of 17 Leaking Underground Storage Tank (LUST) sites, 43 Environmental Repair (ERP) sites, 1 spill site and 1 Voluntary Party Liability Exemption (VPLE) site  BRRTS map
  • There is 1 concentrated animal feeding operation in Door County.
  • There is 1 licensed landfill in Door County.
  • There are no Superfund sites in Door County.

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Door County full report Door County full report

For more information about this web site, its contributors, and the data contained herein, click here.

For assistance in comprehensive planning, please contact Lynn Markham, UW-Stevens Point.
For assistance on groundwater, please contact Charles Dunning, USGS.
Page contact: Webmaster, USGS
Page last updated: January 15, 2008