Sunday, June 17, 2007

Water Increasingly Becoming an Issue

In Illinois, water is increasingly becoming an important issue that local government is dealing with and agriculture is often affected by their decisions. In Lawrenceville, Illinois, the city council voted recently to investigate steps to limit the amount of nitrates that enter the water supply.

LAWRENCEVILLE - Farmers on the Allison Prairie may not like it, but at Thursday's Lawrenceville City Council, initial steps were taken to determine what, if any, legal steps can be taken to limit the amount of nitrates put on the soil for agricultural use.

Alderman Don Goff motioned to authorize the mayor to solicit the assistance of the Illinois Geological Survey to produce a plan for monitoring and regulating the recharge area of the aquifer near the city's water well field.

"The issue of public safety of that water supply has been pushed to the background in our discussions ... with (the Russell-Allison Water Authority)," Goff said. "That has to be the driving force behind the city's discussions with them."

Perhaps one of the reasons the issue of agricultural nitrates has been "pushed to the background" is because of the hot debate it undoubtedly sparks with the faction opposed to the opinion that nitrates in Lawrenceville's drinking water are caused by agricultural chemicals placed on the ground by farmers in the area.

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