More results from contentious well study set for December

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Researchers plan to release more findings from a contentious southwestern Wisconsin pollution study next month.

Scientists sampled 840 wells in Grant, Iowa and Lafayette counties in November 2018 and April 2019. About 32% showed evidence of bacterial or nitrate pollution. They tested 35 of those wells and discovered 91% were contaminated with human and animal fecal matter.

Lafayette County officials accused media outlets of reporting 91% of the region’s wells are polluted. They drafted a resolution that warned journalists who report on future study results without quoting a county news release verbatim would be prosecuted. The board ultimately tabled the resolution amid a firestorm of criticism.

Study leader Ken Bradbury says researchers plan to test three more 35-well subsets. He says the next round of results will be released the first week of December. He didn’t have a date.