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Iowa Groundwater Association Virtual Fall Conference

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Iowa Groundwater Association Virtual Fall Conference

December 10, 2020 @ 9:00 am - 12:00 pm

IGWA Virtual Meeting

Focus on Private Wells

Darrin Thompson:  Exposure Risks for Neonicotinoid Insecticide in drinking water

Neonicotinoids are a relatively new class of insecticides that have found widespread use. Historically, neonicotinoid insecticides have been viewed as ideal replacements for more toxic compounds, like organophosphates, due in part to their perceived limited potential to affect the environment and human health. These insecticides have high water solubility and long half-lives in soil and water. Although neonicotinoid contamination in Iowa waterways and wetlands has been documented, little is known regarding possible groundwater contamination or the risks of exposure from contaminated drinking water.  This presentation will detail research documenting the occurrence of neonicotinoids in groundwater.

Darrin Thompson is Associate Director at the University of Iowa’s Center for Health Effects of Environmental Contamination.  He recently completed his PhD at the UI’s College of Public Health in Occupational and Environmental Health.


Mindy Uhle:  Grants to Counties: Where we’ve been & where we’re going

The Grants to Counties (GTC) Program was established in 1987 when the Iowa Legislature passed the Iowa Groundwater Protection Act. It provides important funding to counties for private well services, including testing, This presentation will talk about the Grants to Counties program and the results of recent efforts to provide more flexibility in the program. Participants will learn how the program is managed at the state level and the efforts made to adapt the new contaminants and challenges at the local level.

Mindy Uhle has worked in various environmental health positions at the Iowa Department of Public health since 2003. Currently, she is the unit lead for the Technical Assistance and Inspections Unit, which includes the Grants to Counties program, permitting programs for Tattoo artists and shops, Backflow Prevention testers, and Swimming Pools.  She is responsible for the management of workflow across unit programs, coordinating training with Iowa inspectors, and managing contracts with local boards of health. She graduated from the University of Illinois-Springfield in 2010 with a Master’s Degree of Public Health.


Ken Bradbury:  SWIGG: The Southwest Wisconsin Groundwater and Geology Study

Much like Northeast Iowa, Southwest Wisconsin has fractured bedrock beneath generally thin soils, putting groundwater at risk for contamination. The purpose of this study is to improve our understanding of groundwater quality in southwest Wisconsin and to better understand how local hydrogeology and well construction characteristics affect groundwater quality. SWIGG was designed to evaluate private well contamination using indicator bacteria (total coliform and E. coli) and nitrate; assess well construction and geological characteristics (e.g., well age, depth to bedrock) that affect total coliform and nitrate contamination; and identify the source of contamination (people, cows, or pigs) in a subset of wells that tested positive for total coliform and nitrate.

Ken Bradbury is Wisconsin’s State Geologist and Director of the Wisconsin Geological and Natural History Survey, UW-Madison Division of Extension.   Ken is a hydrogeologist who has worked on groundwater issues in Wisconsin since 1982, with a focus on applied problems.  His research has included investigations of virus transport in groundwater, groundwater flow in fractured rocks, aquitard hydrogeology, groundwater recharge processes, wellhead protection, regional groundwater simulation, and the hydrogeology of glacial deposits.

$30 for members, $50 for non-members, Free for students
  • 9:00 – 9:45 Darrin Thompson: Exposure Risks for Neonicotinoid Insecticide in drinking water
  • 9:45 – 10:30 Mindy Uhle: Grants to Counties: Where we’ve been & where we’re going
  • 10:30 – 11:15 Ken Bradbury: SWIGG: The Southwest Wisconsin Groundwater and Geology Study
  • 11:15 – 12:00 Panel Discussion Hosted by David Cwiertny


December 10, 2020
9:00 am - 12:00 pm


Iowa Groundwater Association
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