Is it safe to bore holes for water?

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Is it safe to bore holes for water?
« on: 07/07/2011 22:30:02 »
Santosh asked the Naked Scientists:
Is water boring from Earth safe? As I am from Nepal and due to lack of water almost every household is boring water? I wonder if it will have any effect of environment in anyway?

I would be very thankful for your answer.

What do you think?
« Last Edit: 07/07/2011 22:30:02 by _system »


Offline CliffordK

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Is it safe to bore holes for water?
« Reply #1 on: 07/07/2011 10:09:42 »
Wells are common around the world.

The biggest issue is the well construction.

Your well (and all the neighbor's wells) should be sealed at the top, using a submersible pump.  And, it should have casing that has been sealed with cement or a similar sealant for at least the top 20 to 40 feet of depth.  This will help prevent surface contaminants from entering your well.

You should also have your water tested at least once for contaminants. 

Note, there is a risk of using too much of anything.  Using too much water can cause water tables to fall, and could even potentially impact natural springs.  It can also cause land subsidence.  So, usage of well water for normal personal use in a rural setting is normally ok.  Doing heavy irrigation using well water in an arid environment could cause problems, and high density urban well water use could also be problematic.
« Last Edit: 07/07/2011 21:07:23 by CliffordK »