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Ambient Groundwater Monitoring Network

The statewide Ambient Groundwater Monitoring Program provides baseline groundwater data on aquifer characterization, ambient groundwater quality and nonpoint source pollution. Groundwater, including public water supplies and private-sector wells and springs, are sampled quarterly and analyzed for hundreds of parameters, including metals, nutrients, pesticides and volatile organic compounds. 

Currently active sites provide data on granular aquifers, alluvial aquifers, karst terrains and fracture-flow dominated aquifers. One-time ambient groundwater samples are often collected as part of ongoing citizen complaint investigations to assist private citizens with care and maintenance of water wells and springs. Analyses from these one-time sites are added to the program's database, thus broadening the information base on ambient groundwater in Kentucky. Many of the wells and springs sampled in emergency response situations represent ambient groundwater conditions and are also added to the network database.

Data collected from all of the above are available from the Kentucky Groundwater Data Repository at the Kentucky Geological Survey. For further information about the repository, contact Sarah Arpin.

In conjunction with Interagency Technical Advisory Committee on Groundwater (ITAC), the Division of Water has systematically sampled ambient groundwater for more than 20 years. These data have been analyzed to characterize groundwater trends in Kentucky. In the report,  Report on the Condition of Ambient Groundwater in Kentucky: Analysis of the Ambient Groundwater Quality Monitoring Network Data [3.6 MB], delineates more specifically where these statewide trends originate and characterizes differences by physiographic region and source.

Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs)

To accomplish consistent groundwater sampling and comparability of resulting data requires the development and use of standard operating procedures.


Additional information on quality assurance (QA) practices may be found on the QA pages.