Protecting Wisconsin's Groundwater Through Comprehensive Planning
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  Forest County
  This report provides the most current information and data found, as of May 2007, unless otherwise noted.
  Forest County groundwater findings reports Forest County full report Switch to Forest 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. Forest County has 4 municipal water systems.  Table showing water systems in Forest County

GROUNDWATER PROTECTION POLICIES   Table showing water systems in Forest County

  • 1 of 4 municipal water systems in Forest County has a wellhead protection plan: Wabeno.
  • 1 of 4 municipal water systems in Forest County has a wellhead protection ordinance: Wabeno.
  • Forest County has not adopted an animal waste management ordinance.


  • Over $3 million have been spent on petroleum cleanup in Forest County from leaking underground storage tanks, which equates to $394 per county resident.
  • No municipal water systems in Forest County have spent money to reduce nitrate levels.

GROUNDWATER USE    Water use figure

  • From 1979 to 2005, total water use in Forest County has increased from about 750,000 gallons per day to about 1.9 million gallons per day.*
  • The increase in total water use is due primarily to an increase in domestic and aquaculture use, with a decrease in domestic use in 2005.
  • The proportion of county water use supplied by groundwater has decreased from over 98% to about 62% 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 Forest County can be seen in the FULL REPORT or accessed through the map link above.


  • 100% of 43 private well samples collected in Forest County from 1990-2006 met the health-based drinking water limit for nitrate-nitrogen.   Nitrate map
  • A 2002 study estimated that 18% of private drinking water wells in the region of Wisconsin that includes Forest 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 Forest County.
  • 100% of 1 private well sample collected in Forest County met the health standard for arsenic.


  • There are 12 open-status sites in Forest County that have contaminated groundwater and/or soil. These sites include 8 Leaking Underground Storage Tank (LUST) sites and 4 Environmental Repair (ERP) sites.   BRRTS map
  • There are no concentrated animal feeding operations in Forest County.
  • There are no licensed landfills in Forest County.
  • There are no Superfund sites in Forest County.

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Forest County full report Forest 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 14, 2008