The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) recently issued a drinking water advisory letter to about 80 residents in southern Washington County. The homes are mostly in Cottage Grove, Lake Elmo, and parts of West Lakeland Township and St. Paul Park, and all get their drinking water from private wells. No public water supplies are affected.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency issued new standards for perfluorochemicals (PFCs) in drinking water last spring, and this advisory is in response to that new standard. Use the links below to learn more about this new standard and who to call if you have health-related questions or concerns.
The MDH mailed letters to the affected households on Monday, Aug. 22, recommending that they do not use their tap water for drinking and cooking. The MPCA will provide bottled water to these households until a more permanent solution, known as a granular activated carbon (GAC) filter, can be installed. The MPCA’s contractor, Premium Waters Inc., will contact affected residents, discuss their bottled water needs and set up a delivery schedule.
Affected residents will also receive a letter from the MPCA that spells out the process for arranging to have a GAC installed, if they choose to do so. They will not be charged for the GAC, its installation or its maintenance. And if they have recently installed some sort of water purification system, they may be eligible to be reimbursed.
- If you have questions about bottled water delivery or the installation of a GAC system, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Granular Activated Carbon Filters
Additional sampling and testing
The MDH and MPCA also plan to sample approximately 400 to 500 wells within the area of contamination in the coming months and will issue additional drinking water advisories as needed. Residents will receive a letter from the MPCA or the MDH to arrange for drinking water sampling and testing. Use the interactive map below to help determine if you live in an area where sampling and testing will take place:
Until their wells are tested, residents who have concerns about their health can take steps to reduce their potential exposure to PFCs. Information on inexpensive, point-of-use filters and other steps people can take in their homes can be found on MDH's Point-of-Use Devices webpage.