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Well Water Results
MAXIMUM Altman Baratz Campbell Cohen Freed Gstalder Langerman Lundberg Shapiro Strauss Wallace Wasserman Weill Winkelstein Wolf
ACCEPTABLE 110 Valley 49 Granny 50 School 720 Gull 716 Gross 130 Valley  85 Valley 885 Gross 105 Granny 17 Gull Haven 35 Way 29 Granny 250 Valley 82 Valley  88 Valley
  LEVEL Road Treat Road House Hill Pond Rd Hill Road Road Road Hill Road Treat Rd Lane #657 Treat Rd Road Road Road
2005 TESTS                                
Nitrate as Nitrogen:   10 mg/L BRL   0.11     BRL BRL   0.37   BRL       0.22
Copper 1.3 mg/L 0.39   BRL     0.11 BRL   BRL   0.1       BRL
Iron .3 mg/L BRL   0.13     0.2 BRL   BRL   0.23       BRL
Sodium 20 mg/L 19   13     19 21   38   25       28
Total Coliform 0 Absent   Absent     Absent Absent   Absent   Abent       Absent
Conductance (umoh/cm) NA 140   120     160 210   270   170       230
pH  (pH-units) NA 6.3   5.2     6.4 9.3   6.6   6.1       6.9
2006 TESTS                                
Nitrate as Nitrogen:   10 mg/L       BRL   BRL BRL 0.6 0.24 BRL BRL BRL   BRL BRL
Copper 1.3 mg/L       BRL   BRL BRL 0.15 BRL BRL 0.11 BRL   BRL BRL
Iron .3 mg/L       BRL   0.39 BRL BRL BRL BRL BRL BRL   BRL BRL
Sodium 20 mg/L       17   24 26 34 37 19 28 26   15 26
Total Coliform 0       Absent   Absent Absent Absent Absent Absent Present Absent   Absent Absent
Conductance (umoh/cm) NA       130   180 270 250 290 150 200 200   140 200
pH  (pH-units) NA       6.3   6.4 9.2 6.6 6.3 6.3 6 6.4   7.3 6.5
2007 TESTS                                
Nitrate as Nitrogen:   BRL   BRL     BRL BRL     0.45       BRL   BRL
Copper BRL   BRL     BRL BRL     BRL       BRL   BRL
Iron BRL   BRL     BRL 0.1     BRL       BRL   BRL
Sodium 22   32     19 23     39       62   26
Total Coliform Absent   Absent     Absent Absent     Absent       Absent   Absent
Conductance (umoh/cm) 6.2   270     150 140     290       350   190
pH  (pH-units)     5.9     6.2 6.3     6.4       6.2   7.1
Notes to GUPACA members well water tests from August 2005:
This is the first year we have shared well water test results among GUPACA members. We instituted this project because protection of wells and water aquifers was cited as the number one issue of importance in the member survey we conducted this year. We have five results this year, with some geographic diversity. We hope that next year we will have greater member participation and geographic diversity.
John Portnoy, Ecologist, Cape Cod National Seashore, and Harry and Elga Wasserman were very helpful to me in understanding the results of our well water tests. John graciously responded to repeated questions. Although I have not foot-noted this small report, many of the comments come directly from John.
  1. Terms. "BRL" is Below Reporting Level; "NA" is Not applicable.
  2. John has assured me that all the reported values are very close to pristine, unpolluted groundwater. The concentrations of all the items are very low and do not pose a health concern. I want to emphasize the quality of the water because it is also a reality that in neighborhoods such as ours that have septic systems and wells, a possible source for some of the items in the water samples is leachate from the septic fields, highly diluted. For example, nitrate is diluted as it flows with groundwater, but it does not disappear.
  3. In addition to leachate, there are several other possible sources of nitrogen. Fertilizer is an obvious possible source, but nitrates occur naturally at low concentrations and are even carried in acid rain.
  4. Copper is from our supply lines. It leaches out in acid soil.
  5. Iron is abundant in most Cape Cod groundwater.
  6. The sources of sodium could be seawater intrusion, salt water spray or septic leachate. As there is a correlation in the samples between proximity to the ocean and sodium levels, it is most likely that the source of the sodium is salt spray, rather than salt water intrusion into the groundwater aquifer.
  7. Conductance is a measure of the electrical conductivity of the water. The more dissolved constituents of any kind, the greater the conductance.
  8. PH indicates the acidity of the water. pH 7 is neuteral. The levels we reported are typical for Wellfleet. Native vegetation that produces acidity and acid rain drive our groundwater pH below neutrality.
  9. If you have questions on the results or notes, please contact GUPCA at I am confident that John Portnoy would be helpful. He can be contacted at
    — Herb Gstalder